• CLOSED
  • FREE
  • Chelsea, London
National Army Museum
  • CLOSED
  • FREE
  • Chelsea, London

The Napoleonic Wars: 1798 Rebellion in Ireland (Battlefield Walk)

'United Irishmen upon Duty', 1798

'United Irishmen upon Duty', 1798

Led by Patrick Mercer OBE, this tour will rove around Eire looking at some of the bloodiest and cruellest battles in Irish and British history.

Few military historians remember that Frenchmen landed on British soil in 1798 to support a rebellion that threatened to engulf the whole of Ireland. Britain’s political and military leaders were almost overwhelmed by the danger that this posed for, with Ireland in uproar and Frenchmen having seized a toehold in their own country, the whole endeavour against revolutionary France was in peril.

Once war was declared in 1793, Ireland became a potential battlefield for revolution or French invasion. In December 1796, only bad weather prevented 14,000 Frenchmen from landing in Bantry Bay, while in October 1797 another invasion force was destroyed by Admiral Duncan at Camperdown.

The 1798 uprising’s moving force, the Society of United Irishmen, had as its ultimate aim the establishment of an Irish republic which would throw off British rule as exercised through Dublin Castle and a venal Irish parliament. But, the United Irishmen’s actions were treasonable and designed in league with the French. So, the Crown assembled 30,000 British troops and over 60,000 Irish loyalists to crush them and the people who flocked to their cause.

'Battle of Vinegar Hill, June 21st, 1798'

'Battle of Vinegar Hill, June 21st, 1798'

On Saturday 11 September 2021, we will meet at Dublin airport and travel to Wexford. On arriving at Dunbrody Country House Hotel, we will relax while Patrick Mercer OBE sets the scene for the history to be studied and the battles to be followed.

Sunday 12 September will see us follow the Battle of Oulart Hill (27 May 1798), the Battle of New Ross (5 June 1978), and Scullabogue massacre (5-6 June 1798).

On Monday 13 September, we will walk the Battle of Foulkesmill (20 June 1798), Enniscorthy and Vinegar Hill (21 June 1798).

On Tuesday 14 September, we will drive to Castlebar and walk the Battle of Ballinamuck (8 September 1798). We will then overnight in Trim before returning to Dublin and visiting Collins Barracks.

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