Ciudad Rodrigo

8 January, 1812

Spanish Battle Tour Guides

The start of one of the British army's most difficult clashes began at the border fortress of Ciudad Rodrigo on 8 January, 1812.

The bastion covered the northern gateway from Portugal to Spain and was crucial to both sides' plans for upcoming operations.

For the French it was to delay the Anglo-Portuguese, while for the Duke of Wellington it was necessary to remove it as a challenge to his supply lines.

After capturing a hill at the northern part of the town the British pounded away with cannon until two breaches had been created.

On the 19th, Wellington ordered an assault that eventually succeeded, albeit at great cost.

Some 600 Allied troops died and Britain lost one of its best commanders in General Robert Craufurd.




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