Edward Godfrey and Mark Crathorne, respectively Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Society, were guests of the mayor of Lourinhã and the Portuguese Army at the celebrations of the 215th Anniversary of the Battle of Vimeiro. They were accompanied by Members Gavin Trechman and Tim Richardson. A small village situated 60 km north of Lisbon, Vimeiro was the site of a decisive battle on that August day in 1808 during the first French invasion of Portugal in the ambit of the Peninsular War of 1807 to 1814. The Anglo - Portuguese forces commanded by Lieutenant General Sir Arthur Wellesley, later the Duke of Wellington, decisively defeated the French forces commanded by General Jean-Andoche Junot and so determined the end of the first French invasion of Portugal.
During the military ceremony in front of the monument celebrating the battle, Mark accepted on behalf of the Society, a diploma from the Interpretation Centre of the Battle of Vimeiro, which recognised the Society’s contribution to the “preservation and divulgation of the important historic and military patrimony of the Interpretation Centre”. It was particularly appropriate for Mark to receive this award as, over the last 20 years, Mark and Clive Gilbert, a former chairman of the Society, had contributed immensely by translating exhibit labels and video scripts, and conducting research into the events of the battle and the uniforms of the regiments that fought in it.
After the ceremony, the Society representatives were invited to lunch at a local restaurant and established worthwhile contacts with other guests present.
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