Waterloo Air Products plc is supporting this year’s bicentenary of the Battle of Waterloo and, by collaborating with the Royal Armouries, is helping to preserve one of the six surviving cannon from the battle, which form an important part of arms at the Tower of London.
The Fire Worshipper, or ‘Le Guebre’, was originally cast in 1813 in Metz and bears Napoleon’s monogram on the barrel. Waterloo’s sponsorship has enabled a complete restoration of the cannon which is now re-displayed outside the Waterloo block at the Tower of London, for the official Anniversary on the 18 June.
Artillery was used extensively at Waterloo. After the battle much of the French artillery would have been taken as trophies by both the British and the Prussians. Many pieces were melted down for the bronze on Nelson’s Column in Trafalgar Square, and the huge equestrian monument to Wellington which now stands adjacent to The Royal Garrison Church of All Saints, in Aldershot.
In 1827, as constable of the Tower of London, Wellington ensured the preservation of the remaining captured Waterloo guns which form part of an extensive collection held by the Royal Armouries.
Chairman of Waterloo Air products, Rick Edmondson, said: 'Waterloo is proud to play a part in the centenary commemorations. Most of the soldiers came from Kent and the fact that our company is headquartered here is a poignant reminder. We are delighted to have made a contribution to preserve one of the few remaining cannons, which can be enjoyed by future generations.'