The famous farm was an important place for British troops who suffered several attacks to the farm by the french army during the battle of Waterloo. That’s why the farm ,located some yards (or maybe a mile to the least) from where the Lion Mount now stands has become quite a symbol to many attached to the history of the battle. After the battle, the farm itself was in ruins. In the immediate hours post-battle : it was a sight : casualties and wounded, ruins, smoke from the muskets, a war scene and what a dreadful one! Some stones of the farm were later used to build l’ « Hotel des Ruines », Waterloo tourism was very high in the years after as it is now, but the farm kept its former purprose,a private Brabant farming property, until the late 20th century. The premises then were passed in the hands of the « Intercommunale 1815 », managing the battlefield. It’s on HRH The Duke of Wellington and their impulse but helped and funded by British help and charities that the site is now totally renewd. The works started years ago and the rehabilitation of the site was led by Project Hougoumont http://www.projecthougoumont.com
The official ceremony of reopening’ll take place tomorrow in the presence of Prince Charles and Princess Camilla as well as local officials and various dignitaries. It will now be completely dedicated to the memory of the battle, fully integrated in the visits offered to the visitors (when I can remember that as youngster we could only see the farm from a distance, not to disturb the owner) and I’m so thrilled to discover the place soon with his new face and new historical explanations on a very important part of the developping of that very special day of history.