The Second Civil War The Royalists and the Scots

Stainmore Pass^ \ Barnard Castle

Stainmore Pass^ \ Barnard Castle

Stainmore Pass

Lambert

Wetherby

12.8.48

Pontefract

The Scottish invasion route

Route of Lambert & Cromwell

Lambert

Wetherby

12.8.48

Pontefract

The Scottish invasion route

Route of Lambert & Cromwell

The insurrections in England and Wales had taken place without Scottish help, which was long delayed by deep divisions within Scotland over the issue of the Engagement. Colchester was under siege, and the fall of Pembroke but three days away, when the duke of Hamilton entered Cumberland on 8 July. An abortive rising at Kingston on Thames led by the earl of Holland had come to nothing, and the Scots army could hope to achieve little. It entered Carlisle and joined up with English cavaliers under Langdale, forcing Lambert and his New Model regiments to fall back on Penrith and then to Appleby after slight skirmishing. The Scottish army, about 9,000 strong, was poorly manned however, and the English royalist element provided the experienced troops. Moving slowly south, Hamilton was reinforced by a further 5,000 or so fellow countrymen, whilst Lambert consolidated around Barnard Castle to block the route into Yorkshire. On 27 July Cromwell's advance forces joined him, anxious to prevent the junction of Hamilton with royalist and ex-parliamentarian forces, who had garrisoned Pontefract castle once more on 3 June. Although the Scots pushed towards the Stainmore Pass and caused Lambert to withdraw somewhat, no decisive move into Yorkshire was attempted. Lambert retreated to Ripon and so to Knaresborough on 7 August, whilst the Scots, shaken by disputes, debated what course to adopt in a meeting at Hornby Castle, Lancashire, on 9 August. Hamilton opted to march south through Lancashire, potential royalist recruiting country, but on 12 August Cromwell met up with Lambert at Wetherby in Yorkshire and thus created an effective fighting army about 9,000 strong, although outnumbered by the Scots and cavaliers, whose combined forces must have been in the region of 19,000 men.

However, the Scottish army was ill-disciplined and unco-ordinated, and the cavalry marched too far ahead of the foot. On 16 August the horse were in and around Wigan whilst the infantry were straggling into Preston away to the north. Only Langdale's royalists, screening the flank of the march, were really a force to be reckoned with, and they were barely 3,000 strong. The royalist dispositions were unknown to Cromwell when he determined to advance on Preston and try to take the Scots army in flank as they marched. On 16 August elements of both armies clashed at Clitheroe Castle and, after some hesitation, Cromwell chose to march directly against Preston. Langdale warned Hamilton, and the duke ignored the warning. On 17 August Langdale's rearguard was engaged at Longridge, causing him to draw up in battle order and send word to Hamilton. The duke had already sent part of his army off south when the incident occurred, and chose again to ignore Langdale's warnings. The old royalist commander returned to his troops, and the fighting that ensued was bitter, the royalists only slowly giving ground under weight of numbers. Now Hamilton stopped his march, turned his army onto Preston Moor, and sent for his cavalry from Wigan. On second thoughts, Hamilton decided to send his foot across the River Ribble, and during this move, Cromwell entered Preston and stormed onto the moor, almost capturing Hamilton. The Darwen and Ribble Bridges were stormed in hard fighting, and the New Model burst through, winning a substantial victory. Darkness halted pursuit on 17 August, and the escaping Scottish infantry missed their cavalry returning to aid them on another road from Wigan. Extricating themselves, the horse moved back on Wigan, where, joining the foot, they briefly resisted and then began to retreat south. At Warrington, Hamilton made his escape, and the infantry surrendered wholesale to Cromwell's forces. Hamilton was later apprehended at Uttoxeter, tried and sentenced to death by the High Court of Justice, and Langdale was taken in Nottinghamshire. The surrender of Colchester on 28 August marked the end of the second civil war.

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