Arthur Wellesley, first Duke of Wellington, who took his title from the town, is commemorated on the Blackdown Hills obelisk, overlooking the town. The Wellington Monument was erected to celebrate his Battle of Waterloo victory, its foundation stone being laid in 1817, on land owned by the ‘Iron Duke’. Its completion was not until 1892. Best remembered as the general who defeated Napoleon, the duke twice held office as prime minister.
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