"Two hundred years on, it is ridiculous to spare the blushes of the French"

Guests attending a service in London to mark the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo have been told not to act in a ‘triumphalist’ way – to avoid upsetting the French.

Invitations to the service at St Paul’s Cathedral advise that it will avoid glorifying the Duke of Wellington’s historic victory over Napoleon in 1815.

But last night the move was criticised by politicians, who said it ‘took political correctness to an absurd new degree’.

The invitation to the Waterloo 200 event says: ‘The service, although related to a military victory, is not in any way glorifying war, nor must it be seen as triumphalist.’