General Hill's medals: Waterloo veteran's badge sold for £8K at auction

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Badge with medalsImage source, Hanson's Auctioneers
Image caption,
The medals were awarded to Lieutenant-General Rowland Hill who fought alongside the Duke of Wellington

A military bar brooch featuring medals awarded to a Battle of Waterloo soldier has been sold for £7,800 at auction.

The rare medals badge of honour, which includes four grand crosses, belonged to Lieutenant-General Rowland Hill.

The commander of the British Army fought with the Duke of Wellington in 1815 and served in the Napoleonic Wars.

Auctioneers said the historical brooch, which was discovered in its original box in Derbyshire, "honoured and recognised his many acts of bravery".

Image caption,
A statue in Shrewsbury commemorates the Waterloo general but has been damaged by the weather

The medals include the Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath, the Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Guelphic Order, the Grand Cross of the Order of the Tower and the Sword and the Peninsular Cross.

Charles Hanson, of Hanson's Auctioneers, said the badge was one of the "richest historical" military finds he has ever come across and was "worthy of a place in a museum".

"I am delighted to see this important historical item honouring a war hero and great leader of men sell for well above its estimate of £1,000 to £2,000," he said.

Mr Hanson added that General Hill was an "extraordinary man".

"He led armies of up to 30,000 men in some of the most important battles of the 1800s in Egypt, Spain, Portugal and France," he said.

"He inevitably had brushes with death. At the Battle of Waterloo, where Hill commanded the II Corps, he was lost in the melee and feared dead but escaped unscathed."

Lieutenant-General Rowland Hill

Image source, Hanson's Auctioneers
  • General Hill was born in 1772 at Hawkstone Hall, in Shropshire, and died in 1842 at the age of 70
  • He was made Commander-in-Chief of the British Army in 1828, succeeding Wellington
  • The commander was known as Daddy Hill by his troops due to his caring nature
  • He never married and devoted his life to serving his country

Source: Hanson's Auctioneers