18th June 2015, the Fields of Waterloo, on the bi-centenary of the great event. I caught the train from Brussels/Luxembourg out to Waterloo and a taxi to the battlefield. I was there by 9am.
Hardly any other members of the public had arrived at that time. I made straight for Hougoumont Farm where the size of the tented encampment of real actors absolutely astonished me.
My last visit to Hougoumont was twenty one years ago at which time it was in a state of very poor repair. Then, just seven years ago, we heard the news that Hougoumont was to be razed to the ground and redeveloped.
The late Brigadier Richard Holmes, the greatest military historian of our times, launched a save Hougoumont Farm campaign to which Godfrey Bloom and I subscribed and did our best to help by advertising.
It is rare in any written piece that I praise the British government. But for once they came up with the goods and provided money. Hougoumont today has been faithfully reconstructed as it was before the battle commenced at 11am on the 18th June 1815.
The museum is a wonder including a film show, such things about which I’m normally sceptical. It is literally awe-inspiring. I would recommend anyone to go there.
From there we trudged in the rain to the British bivouac where we befriended the Anglesey Hussars. What pleasure I took later in the day in introducing UKIP MEP Nathan Gill who lives in Anglesey and three of his sons to the local guys. Before long the kids were loading the guns and joining in.
There was a terrific sense of well-being towards myself and all in UKIP from those attending and I bumped into one or two British press whilst I was there.
Then we decided, accompanied by the Daily Express, to go to Napoleon’s camp. I joked as we arrived that unlike the low-grade catering in the British Allies bivouac, the French would do better. The first thing we saw as we arrived were some very pretty girls serving champagne. So we indulged.
The Emperor’s tent was quite a sight, with re-enactors in full finery enjoying a proper French lunch. We blagged our way in and I met the Emperor, a remarkable lookalike. Discussions on European domination ensued and he presented me with a medal: a replica of his 1811 celebration of his takeover of the Netherlands. I posed for photographs wondering whether UKIPers would have me lynched for such a betrayal. He then presented me with an 1812 five franc coin with of course his own face on the front of it at which he announced that the franc is superior to the Euro. I can inform you that the modern day Napoleon is a French nationalist Eurosceptic. Hurrah!
As I was trudging miles over the battlefield, the official VIP reception was taking place, at which I’m told great speeches were made by supposedly great people. They all drew the conclusion that the answer to war was European Union and that what Wellington and his allies had displayed was the strength of Europeans working together. God help us, these people are wrong by 180 degrees.
What happened at Waterloo was that Britain and her allies overcame the maniac who wanted to build a United States of Europe. When I think of the British Guards with their Dutch colleagues in the hell of Hougoumont, outnumbered, and being battered by heavy artillery, I realise that the upcoming referendum is our Hougoumont. I must find a red tunic.