The Tewkesbury campaign

Urged on by Louis XI, Margaret had finally sailed on 24 March. Storms forced her ships back to France several times, and she and Prince Edward finally landed at Weymouth in Dorsetshire on the same day that the Battle of Barnet was fought. While Margaret sheltered at nearby Cerne Abbey, the Duke of Somerset brought news of the disaster at Barnet to her. She briefly wished to return to France, but Prince Edward persuaded her to gamble for victory. Somerset and the Earl of Devon had already raised an army for Lancaster in the West Country. Their best hope was to march northwards and join forces with the Lancastrians in Wales, led by Jasper Tudor. Other Lancastrian forces could be relied upon to distract King Edward; in particular, a fleet under Warwick's relation, the Bastard of Fauconberg, was preparing to descend on Kent where the Nevilles and Warwick in particular had always been popular.

In London, Edward had learned of Margaret's landing only two days after she arrived. Although he had given many of his supporters and troops leave after the victory at Barnet, he was rapidly able to muster a substantial force at Windsor, just west of London. It was difficult at first to determine Margaret's intentions, as the Lancastrians had sent out several feints which suggested that they might be making directly for London, but Edward's army set out for the West Country within a few days.

On 30 April, Margaret's army had reached Bath, on its way towards Wales. She turned aside briefly to secure guns, reinforcements and money from the city of Bristol. On the same day, Edward reached Cirencester. On hearing that Margaret was at Bristol, he turned south to meet her army. However, the Lancastrians made a feint towards Little Sodbury, about 12 miles (19 km) north-west of Bristol. Nearby was Sodbury Hill, an Iron Age hill fort which was an obvious strategic point for the Lancastrians to seize. When Yorkist scouts reached the hill, there was a sharp fight in which they suffered heavy casualties. Believing that the Lancastrians were about to offer battle, Edward temporarily halted his army while the stragglers caught up and the remainder could rest after their rapid march from Windsor. However, the Lancastrians instead made a swift move north by night, passing within 3 miles (4.8 km) of Edward's army. By the morning of 2 May, they had gained the safety of Berkeley Castle and had a head start of 15 miles (24 km) over Edward.

Edward realised that the Lancastrians were seeking to cross the River Severn into Wales. The nearest crossing point they could use was at the city of Gloucester. He sent urgent messages to the Governor, Sir Richard Beauchamp, ordering him to bar the gates to Margaret and man the city's defences. When Margaret arrived in the morning of 3 May, Beauchamp refused Margaret's summons to let her army pass, and she realised that there was insufficient time to storm the city before Edward's army arrived. Instead, her army made another forced march of 10 miles (16 km) to Tewkesbury, attempting to reach the next bridge at Upton-upon-Severn, 7 miles (11 km) further on. Edward meanwhile had marched no less than 31 miles (50 km), passing through Cheltenham (then little more than a village) in the late afternoon. The day was very hot, and both the Lancastrians and Edward's pursuing army became exhausted. The Lancastrians were forced to abandon some of their artillery, which was captured by Yorkist reinforcements following from Gloucester.

At Tewkesbury, the tired Lancastrians halted for the night. Most of their army were footmen, and unable to continue further without rest, and even the mounted troops were weary. By contrast, Edward's army was composed mainly of mounted men, who nevertheless dismounted to fight on foot as most English armies did at this period. Hearing from his "prickers" or mounted scouts of Margaret's position, Edward drove his army to make another march of 6 miles (9.7 km) from Cheltenham, finally halting 3 miles (4.8 km) from the Lancastrians. The Lancastrians knew they could retreat no further before Edward attacked their rear, and that they would be forced to give battle.

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The Tewkesbury campaign http://army.ezinemark.com/the-tewkesbury-campaign-17e94f88155.html

Urged on by Louis XI, Margaret had finally sailed on 24 March. Storms forced her ships back to France several times, and she and Prince Edward finally landed at Weymouth in Dorsetshire on the same day that the Battle of Barnet was fought. While Margaret sheltered at nearby Cerne Abbey, the Duke of Somerset brought news of the disaster at Barnet to her. She briefly wished to return to France, but Prince Edward persuaded her to gamble for victory. Somerset and the Earl of Devon had already raised an army for Lancaster in the West Country. Their best hope was to march northwards and join forces with the Lancastrians in Wales, led by Jasper Tudor. Other Lancastrian forces could be relied upon to distract King Edward; in particular, a fleet under Warwick's relation, the Bastard of Fauconberg, was preparing to descend on Kent where the Nevilles and Warwick in particular had always been popular.

In London, Edward had learned of Margaret's landing only two days after she arrived. Although he had given many of his supporters and troops leave after the victory at Barnet, he was rapidly able to muster a substantial force at Windsor, just west of London. It was difficult at first to determine Margaret's intentions, as the Lancastrians had sent out several feints which suggested that they might be making directly for London, but Edward's army set out for the West Country within a few days.

On 30 April, Margaret's army had reached Bath, on its way towards Wales. She turned aside briefly to secure guns, reinforcements and money from the city of Bristol. On the same day, Edward reached Cirencester. On hearing that Margaret was at Bristol, he turned south to meet her army. However, the Lancastrians made a feint towards Little Sodbury, about 12 miles (19 km) north-west of Bristol. Nearby was Sodbury Hill, an Iron Age hill fort which was an obvious strategic point for the Lancastrians to seize. When Yorkist scouts reached the hill, there was a sharp fight in which they suffered heavy casualties. Believing that the Lancastrians were about to offer battle, Edward temporarily halted his army while the stragglers caught up and the remainder could rest after their rapid march from Windsor. However, the Lancastrians instead made a swift move north by night, passing within 3 miles (4.8 km) of Edward's army. By the morning of 2 May, they had gained the safety of Berkeley Castle and had a head start of 15 miles (24 km) over Edward.

Edward realised that the Lancastrians were seeking to cross the River Severn into Wales. The nearest crossing point they could use was at the city of Gloucester. He sent urgent messages to the Governor, Sir Richard Beauchamp, ordering him to bar the gates to Margaret and man the city's defences. When Margaret arrived in the morning of 3 May, Beauchamp refused Margaret's summons to let her army pass, and she realised that there was insufficient time to storm the city before Edward's army arrived. Instead, her army made another forced march of 10 miles (16 km) to Tewkesbury, attempting to reach the next bridge at Upton-upon-Severn, 7 miles (11 km) further on. Edward meanwhile had marched no less than 31 miles (50 km), passing through Cheltenham (then little more than a village) in the late afternoon. The day was very hot, and both the Lancastrians and Edward's pursuing army became exhausted. The Lancastrians were forced to abandon some of their artillery, which was captured by Yorkist reinforcements following from Gloucester.

At Tewkesbury, the tired Lancastrians halted for the night. Most of their army were footmen, and unable to continue further without rest, and even the mounted troops were weary. By contrast, Edward's army was composed mainly of mounted men, who nevertheless dismounted to fight on foot as most English armies did at this period. Hearing from his "prickers" or mounted scouts of Margaret's position, Edward drove his army to make another march of 6 miles (9.7 km) from Cheltenham, finally halting 3 miles (4.8 km) from the Lancastrians. The Lancastrians knew they could retreat no further before Edward attacked their rear, and that they would be forced to give battle.

александр лобановский

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