Wednesday 3 July 1996
It’s a 65 mile drive from Sare to Orthez, so we had postponed the visit until the weather improved. This morning we had a dry, if cloudy, sky and as our holiday was nearing its end decided to go anyway.
Fought on 27 February 1814 this was one of the last battles of the Peninsular War. Soult withdrew his main army from
We found a picnic site where we got out our maps and books to orientate ourselves and decide how best to tackle the battlefield.
We found the
We did find the Roman Camp, but it is now completely overgrown by large trees and thick undergrowth. We walked around the whole area, but could not find even one good view of St Boes. Hot and tired we eventually retired to the local pub to rethink our strategy.
The terrain made it very difficult to follow the main attack from the Roman Camp, so we decided to search for the main French position. Driving along the new road we found this memorial to Marshal Foy, who was wounded during the battle. We knew that the original road marked the main French position.
I had done a lot of preparation for our visit to Orthez, and had found a very detailed map of the battle. So we were expecting to experience little difficulty in walking the battlefield. However we wasted a lot of time around the Roman Camp and the area between there and the French position. Although interesting to explore St Boes and the French position, we were disappointed that the area around the Roman Camp proved so difficult and unrewarding.