In 1810, the invasion of Portugal by Napoleon’s French troops was stopped dead a few miles north of Lisbon. It was not a major battle that stopped them but a chain of fortifications which had been constructed in total secrecy during the previous year by a small team of British Royal Engineer officers supervising a large Portuguese workforce. Wellington’s Anglo-Portuguese army sat in relative comfort behind these Lines while the frustrated French starved a few miles to their north.
Rod MacArthur has a 40 minute PowerPoint presentation on these events. The talk commences with some background to the Peninsular War, followed by more detail on the 1810 Campaign, the Battle of Bussaco and the construction of the Lines themselves.
All Rod’s talks are given to raise funds for charities, in this case for Combat Stress, which provides support and treatment to military veterans with mental health problems to help them tackle the past and take on the future.