Sunday, 4 August 2013

This Day in History - Battle of Evesham 4th August 1265 (almost)

My attempt at posting remotely was obviously a dismay failure. This post was supposed to be published yesterday but when I tried to check via my mobile it was clear that it didn't work. I couldn't even access my dashboard with my mobile to publish it that way. Anyways, pretend this is Sunday morning and you still don't know who the new Doctor will be. There was a thunderstorm before the battle just like there been throughout the midlands over the last few days.
 
This is the first in a (hopefully) regular series of posts highlighting various events that took place on 'This Day in history' but adding my own personal slant. My brother and myself have visited hundreds, if not thousands, of historical sites, buildings, castles and battlefields etc. across the world over the years (followers of my recent Twitter feeds will probably have better indication of the number of places we visit).

We recently visited Evesham where one of the main forefathers of modern parliamentary democracy, Simon de Montfort, was killed in battle. Clicking on the following links will take you to sites that will give a far better accounts of the battle and the life of de Montfort himself than I ever can:

Simon de Montfort Society

wiki - Battle of Evesham

Battlefields Trust & Battlefields Trust

The battle took place a mile north of the town centre and is now easily accessible thanks to the hard work of the Simon de Montfort Society and kindly allowed by the landowners. If you do visit, please stick to the proper pathway as it passes through and around fields of barley and fruit trees, which is all still private land.
The path isn't marked that well from the east. We parked on the nearby Tesco's carpark and walked past FS Marble & Granite Ltd (if you're using a new fangled Satnav the post code is WR11 4RA). The path starts down the side of  Ivy Cottage which is just behind the factory.

View from South-west looking north-east towards Green Hill. Simon de Montfort charged uphill from the right towards Prince Edward's army on the left of this image.

 
Charging along this ridge de Montfort would have seen, from left to right Roger de Mortimer, Prince Edward and Earl Gilbert de Clare deploying into battle along Green Hill in the background.
Information panel in the area know as Battle Well.
Battle Well looking west, generally thought to have been were Simon de Montfort was cut down and butchered. With the lost of their leader de Montfort's forces were quickly broken then pursued to the east and south. The remains of de Montfort were gathered and buried in the nearby abbey.
 
As per usual I like to crowbar a reference to Dudley in my posts which is quite easy with this one. Roger de Somery, Baron of Dudley was probably present but not actually fighting. He had been captured, along with the king Henry III, earlier in the year at the Battle of Lewis and was released soon afterwards.

One of my many side projects involves painting numerous figures depicting the knights from this period along with those involved in the Anglo-Welsh wars, including of course the knights and soldiers from Dudley and the surrounding areas. The heraldry from this time lends itself very well to colourful and attractive looking figures but more of this at a later date.