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Hand inside your jacket time

Ciudad Rodrigo, Salamanca, the whole of the Spain and Portugal was in a bit of a tizz about 200 years ago. What with French armies roaming about, the Spaniards playing unfair and inventing guerilla tactics and the English deciding that if the Spaniards were going to fight the French they may as well join in and have a go at Boneparte. After all the man was causing we Brits a fair bit of bother with his trade embargo. And the Brits could rely on their faithful allies the Portuguese who were somewhat narked that the French had invaded their country.

Ciudad Rodrigo was an important town in this little argie bargie. A gallant defence of the city by Spaniards against the French gave the Brits time to regroup. Wellington took the city back in record time from the French a couple of years after as one of his very early steps in breaking out of Portugal and going on the attack.

This is not the sort of thing that a town that depends heavily on tourism is likely to miss. We went to one of the first of what will, no doubt, be a series of events that will be milking the 200th Anniversary for all it's worth. It was an exhibition called Sitios Napoleónicos based mainly on the contemporary Sketches of the Country, Character and Costume in Portugal and Spain made during the Campaign, and on the route of the British Army, in 1808 and 1809. Engraved and coloured from the drawings by the Rev. William Bradford, A. B. of St. John’s College, Oxford, Chaplain of Brigade to the Expedition.

Winning idea.

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