27th October – Battle of Alma Talk by Patrick Mercer


This is a Zoom talk and will take place at 6pm on Thursday 27th October.

Patrick Mercer was the first Britons to walk the battlefields of the Crimea since Winston Churchill in 1945.  After the collapse of the Iron Curtain in 1991 made forbidden parts of Russia suddenly accessible, Mercer has been able to visit these sites almost every year since.  Extraordinarily, the bones, weapons and equipment of British and Russian dead can still be found in remote corners making the Crimea one of the most fascinating spots to visit.

Alma, 20 September 1854.

The first, major battle of the campaign was fought soon after the British, French and Turkish allies landed.  An immensely strong position dug above the line of the Alma River had to be stormed if the Allies were to close with their objective further south – the port of Sebastopol.  And stormed it was in a bloody, daylight, uphill assault against prepared artillery positions: first the French turned the Russian flank before the British bludgeoned their way to victory.