MAP 32 16441645 The War in the North

York had surrendered to the allied armies on 16 July 1644 after the battle of Marston Moor had broken Newcastle's northern royalist army. Rupert had marched away immediately into Lancashire after the battle, sending Sir John Mayney to recruit in Furness, and Goring and Langdale to Carlisle. From 9 to 20 July, the Prince perambulated around Lancashire, but on the 21st he was at Preston, on the 22nd he garrisoned Lathom House again, and on the 25th entered Chester. Mayney, in the Furness area, recruited and raised money which he sent to Carlisle, and then on 10 September the brigade returned towards Yorkshire, practically unopposed, and on the 15th drove off siege forces before Pontefract, eventually marching on south. Elsewhere in Lancashire, some of Rupert's cavalry were threatening disruption, and on 10 August Meldrum began to move out from Manchester to deal with them. On 15 August the royalist cavalry won a smart action at Ribble Bridge, near Preston, but on the following day Meldrum routed part of their force at Walton Cop, also near Preston. Detaching troops to besiege Greenhalgh Castle, Meldrum collided with the main royalist force at Ormskirk on 20 August, scattering it in confusion. The bulk, however, crossed into Cheshire, where on 25 August they were beaten by Sir William Brereton at the battle of Malpas and, much reduced in numbers, finally struggled through to join Rupert further south. Meldrum, aided by forces from Cheshire, now besieged Liverpool which fell on 1 November. Henceforth in the North-West only Lathom House and the city of Carlisle, commanded by Sir Thomas Glemham, held out solidly for the King. Carlisle was not to surrender until 25 June 1645, Lathom not until the following December.

The fall of York in July 1644 tore the heart out of the royalist hold on the North, leaving Newcastle upon Tyne and isolated garrisons to be reduced piecemeal. On 26 July, Tickhill Castle, strategically important, fell to the earl of Manchester and Sheffield was summoned on the 27th. After initial resistance it surrendered on 11 August. Pontefract, however, proved a difficult proposition, and siege lines there were frequently disrupted by raids from within the castle, as by Mayney's relief on 15 September. Skipton had not yet attracted a siege army, nor had Scarborough, but Knaresborough was blockaded. Late in September royalists from Skipton successfully raided Ripon, but Middleham Castle, recently occupied by royal troops, was reduced without loss. On 22 November, Helmsley surrendered after fierce resistance, during which Sir Thomas Fairfax had been badly wounded as he directed siege operations. On 20 December, Knaresborough yielded on terms. At Newcastle upon Tyne Glemham's successor as governor, Sir John Marley, put up a determined show of resistance, but the city eventually fell to storm on 19 October after severe fighting.

The siege of Pontefract brought about one of the most remarkable exploits of the whole war, Langdale's relief march. The Northern Horse, with permission to return to their home ground being granted by the King, left the Oxford area in late February 1645. Across England, parliamentarian commanders were puzzled and perplexed by the brigade's purpose and its speed. Leaving Banbury on 23 February, Langdale routed enemy cavalry at Daventry, and on the 25th broke a superior enemy force at Melton Mowbray. On the 26th, reinforced from Newark, the Northern Horse pushed on, and on 1 March came in sight of

Royalist garrison

Allied bases mis

Newcastle, 1 9.10.44

LTynemouth 20.10.44

Raby 1 July'45

^Bolton Jhurland Midd,eham




Knaresborough 20.12.44


Preston 15.8.44 16.8.44

Ormskirk 20.8.44


Liverpool 1.1 1.44

Skipton Marston*┬╗York

12.45 Moor 2.7.44

Pontefract Sandal a 20.7.45 10.45



Pontefract Sandal a 20.7.45 10.45

Liverpool 1.1 1.44





Sheffield < 11.8.44

k Tickhill


Pontefract. Still outnumbered, Langdale charged, scattered the enemy, and took hundreds of prisoners. Pontefract was relieved and provisioned, and the Northern Horse withdrew to Newark. The siege was eventually renewed, and Pontefract capitulated honourably on 20 July. Nearby Sandal held out until October, Bolton in Swaledale to November, and Skipton to December 1645. Scarborough, after a rigorous siege which saw the death of Sir John Meldrum as he directed operations, was surrendered by Sir Hugh Cholmeley on 25 July.

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