Before daybreak on 11th June 1900 a British force of about 14 000 men under Lord Roberts advanced against General Botha’s 7000 Boer commandos in their fortified positions, which extended from the Kameelfontein Ridge in the north to Witfontein in the south east. The battle lasted until the evening of 12 June, when General Botha ordered a strategic withdrawal of his defenders. Total British casualties amounted to 176 while Boer losses were only about 30. The Earl of Airlie was killed on 11th June below the Rhenosterfontein ridge, about a kilometre north of here, leading a heroic charge of the 12th Lancers to save the guns of Q Battery.
Three Blue Plaques have been placed at different localities on the battlefield.
The battle took place across a 40km front north and south of the Donkerhoek Pass. The British military cemetery and Boer Memorial is in the Rhenosterfontein Nature Reserve.
The British cemetery at Diamond Hill (Vincent Carruthers)
Lines of infantry advance against the concealed Boer positions on Diamond Hill (Illustrated London News)
Sketch of the Battle of Diamond Hill