Waterloo Uncovered combines world-class archaeology with a programme of care and recovery for people suffering from some of the physical and mental impacts of military service. Since 2015, the charity has been excavating on the site of one of the world’s most decisive battles - Waterloo in Belgium. In that time, they have made important new discoveries about the bloody fighting there, and about the men who took part in the battle.

Waterloo Uncovered was recently recognised for its charitable work by a Points of Light Award from the UK Prime Minister.


The military community is at the heart of Waterloo Uncovered’s DNA, and military participants bring their unique perspective, skills, and experience to help the archaeology. The Waterloo Uncovered team comprises internationally-renowned archaeologists, students, specialists in many different fields, as well as military veterans and serving personnel. International partnerships are key: we work closely with local archaeological experts in Belgium and so far, we are working with groups of military participants from the UK, the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. This recognition that European nations share a common history is an important part of our work.

“Whether they are military, ex-military or “civvies”, everybody bonded, and I made good friends for life” - UK military participant.


Archaeological successes include: the rediscovery of buildings destroyed in the fighting at Hougoumont, as well as significant amounts of musket balls revealing the French assaults, and buttons and personal effects of soldiers of different nationalities; poignant evidence of the fight to save lives in the form of human remains from amputations carried out by surgeons in Wellington’s Field Hospital at Mont Saint Jean; and new evidence of the lost chateau of Frichermont.

“The Battle of Waterloo changed the face of Europe. We’re delighted for Dutch military personnel to be standing alongside British and international colleagues at a site so important to European history” - Colonel Ludy de Vos, Veteranen Instituut Netherlands.


Many of the military personnel involved have experienced service-related wounds and injuries or suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Taking part on the Dig can help people rebuild health and confidence, learn new skills and interests and give them the chance to mix with people from a variety of backgrounds. Participants are supported through a twelve-month, professionally-run programme that encourages them on the road to recovery, wellbeing, transition into civilian life, education and employment opportunities. All who participate achieve something and play their part in uncovering some new and unique history.

“Thank you for the experience and step I needed to move forward with my life” - UK military participant.


Ben Mead shares his expereinces of war and how the charity has helped him rebuild his life.


To learn more about Waterloo Uncovered and support the incredible work that they do with veterans, just visit their website below.