SNC036-HW Trooper, King’s Light Dragoons, 1812
Wellingtons siege of Burgos had ended in an inglorious retreat to Portugal in November 1812, and it seemed the hard-won gains of that year had been in vain. Indeed, the opinion shared by more than a few of Wellingtons officers was that Spain was lost for good, and that they might as well pack up and go home. It was not, however, a view shared by Wellington, and the Vitoria campaign of 1813 saw him bounce back with a vengeance.
Given the arduous nature of the retreat, Wellingtons army recovered with remarkable speed, and by the end of 1812 it was well on its way to regaining full strength. This was helped by the arrival of the first batch of reinforcements from England a brigade of the Household Cavalry, numbering around 350 men, followed in February 1813 by a brigade of hussars from the 10th, 15th and 18th Hussars.