Amateurs at War – British Officers and Reform after Waterloo

Kyle van Beurden PhD Confirmation

Hew Strachan has laid blame for the general deterioration and lack of reform of the British army between Waterloo and the Crimean War with a budget tightening government and a conservative element within the army, led by the Duke of Wellington. While there is certainly merit to both claims, the British army has a long history of avoiding structured reform, a resistance only more stridently maintained following a victorious war. Rather, they depended largely on the initiative of individual officers to develop and expand the knowledge required for their profession as technologies and ideas changed.