Houses of Interest: Nottinghamshire

The ECWtravelogue has finally plucked up the courage to cross the border into neighbouring Nottinghamshire. Due to the current Coronavirus restrictions this is more of a 'places of interest' post than a look inside the titular houses.

Nottingham and Nottinghamshire were an integral part of King Charles's corridor of power that stretched from Oxford to York. Having such a strategic position, it is fair to say that the County of Nottinghamshire had a significant part to play in the First Civil War.

First let's look at Nottingham: the Royal Standard was raised in August 1642 near Nottingham Castle symbolically signalling the start of the War (even though the fighting had started over a month earlier).

Plaque commemorating the raising of the Royal Standard,  corner of Standard Hill/King Charles Street
Nottingham Castle was the site of a number of smaller actions during the First Civil War, eventually falling into Parliamentarian hands. One time prison to Sir Marmaduke Langdal…

Tower Hamlet's Trained Band

Welcome to my Tower Hamlet's Trained Band. A unit that has had more incarnations than a Tina Turner tribute act has outfit changes.

They appeared on this blog in one of the first entries with a green flag; once my knowledge of the London Trained Bands grew I realised that the flag was incorrect (I'd trusted a list on the internetz!) so the flag was replaced with the 'correct' one. Add some more LTB knowledge and I realised that they really probably shouldn't be wearing red coats either  (I'd trusted a list on the internetz - I sense a pattern emerging). So rather than repainting them, my original Tower Hamlet's Trained Band were reborn as Colonel John Birch's Regiment of Foot. So I present to you the Tower Hamlet's Trained Band mkII.

Depicted wearing civilian clothes, and a hefty smattering of trained band buff, you'll be pleased to hear that they are carrying the correct flag for 1643-1647. Their flag is rather odd in so far that it doesn't…

Colonel John Birch's Regiment of Foot

A old regiment in a new guise. Once upon a time, this regiment appeared on this blog as the Tower Hamlet's Regiment of Foot of the  London Trained Band. When I first started my ECW project I fell in to the trap of taking information on wargaming websites about coat colours as being correct. So they ended up with red coats. Regular readers (hello both of you) will know that 'the London Trained Bands wore red' is a particular bugbear of mine: so they have had a little bit of a makeover - a change of flag, and label underneath their base. The Tower Hamlet's Regiment will be raised anew in their correct attire - civilian clothes and trained band buff.

But back to Colonel John Birch and his Regiment of Foot, raised in Kent in 1644 for service in Sir William Waller's Southern Association. We know that they had red coats and yellow flags, but not what design of flag. Playing it safe I've gone for the Lieutenant Colonel's flag (I've used the Gell's Lieutenan…

Sir Gervase Lucas’s Regiment of Horse

The Royalist Regiment of Horse that garrisoned Belvoir* Castle in Leicestershire: Belvoir Castle was strategically important - protecting the route from Oxford to Newark.

Their battle honours, with a few exceptions, are small skirmishes close to the Castle: Ancaster Heath, Battle of Grantham, Melton Mowbray, Sproxton Heath, Cotes Bridge, Newark, Denton, Kirby Bellars, besieged at Belvoir Castle - surrendering after four months.

Sir Gervase lost much of his wealth over the course of the wars, so much that he was willing to accept the post of Governor of Bombay at the Restoration, dying in the city in 1688.
* in case you are wondering, it is pronounced 'beaver'

Prince Rupert’s Regiment of Horse

Prince Rupert's Regiment of Horse - the epitome of dashing cavaliers. Rupert was of course, King Charles's nephew, started his military career at age 14 when he accompanied the Prince of Orange on campaign.  He arrived in England in August 1642 with his brother, Maurice, and a retinue of battle hardened English and Scottish veterans of the wars in Europe.

Often seen as hot bloodied, and in command when the Royalist army committed some of the worst atrocities of a brutal barbaric war, he was also capable of leniency against foes who had put up a brave fight.

Of course no mention of Rupert can fail to mention his poodle Boye; Boye wasn't a 1970's toy poodle (as depicted in the film Cromwell) but instead a hunting dog.

Rupert's life and career was somewhat fantastical, there is not space to summarise his life in a few short paragraphs.

After what can only be described as a swashbuckling life he died in November 1682 of pleurisy. He is buried in Westminster Abbey.

His …

Earl of Caernarvon’s Regiment of Horse

Robert Dormer, the Earl of Caernarvon, served in both the Bishops Wars as a Colonel of Horse.

He raised this Regiment in 1642; they fought at Southam, Edgehill Banbury, Cirencester, Cheham, Caversham Bridge, Chewton Mendip, Lansdown, Rowde Ford, Roundway Down, Bristol, Dorchester, Weymouth, Aldbourne Chase and First Newbury, where Robert fell. He was carried to an inn at Newbury, where King Charles is said to have sat with him until all hope of life was gone.

Richard Neville took command of the Regiment and they went on to fight at Cheriton, Cropredy Bridge, Boconnoc House, Lostwithiel, Second Newbury, the Relief of Donnington, Langport and Torrington before surrendering in March 1646 at Truro.

Robert inherited his father's title at the tender age of 6, and became the ward of King James I, James sold this wardship to the Philip Herbert 1st Earl of Montgomery and 4th Earl of Pembroke for £4000. He would marry Herbert's daughter when he was just 15. 
Robert was originally buried…

Sir Charles Gerard’s Regiment of Horse

This is the first of four Royalist Regiments of Horse that feature the old two part 'cavalry, hat with pistol' which sadly have been replaced by a new pack. I say sadly because, whilst the new pack figures are nice, the old hat wearing man with a pistol across his chest is one of my favourite PP sculpts. Love him. Shame he is no longer available. But I digress...

The blog has already looked at Sir Charles Gerrard's Regiment of Foot, so if you would like to now more about Sir Charles have a look here. He had a habit of getting himself wounded.

His Regiment of Horse were formed in Oxford, in 1642. It is thought that they fought at Ripple Field, took part in a skirmish at Oddington, stormed Bristol, fought at Aldbourne Chase, First Newbury, Andover, Winchester, Newark, Kidwelly Castle, Cardiff, Carmarthen, Newcastle Emlyn, Laugharne Castle, Roch Castle, Haverfordwest, Pembroke, rode to the Relief of Donnington Castle, Cardigan, Huntingdon, Rowton Heath, Denbigh Green, Belvoir …

Lord Percy’s Regiment of Foot

Percy's were formed from detachments sent south by Newcastle in early 1643 as an escort to an ammunition convoy. Often stated as being attached to the artillery train they were a standard Regiment of Foot which served in Thomas Blagge's Oxford Brigade, Symonds recorded them as wearing white coats at the Aldbourne Chase muster.

They fought at the Siege of Gloucester, First Newbury, occupied Newport Pagnell (oviously attracted to the good motorway connections), believed to have been at Cheriton, Cropredy Bridge, and Lostwithiel. At Lostwithiel Percy was dismissed form service, Colonel William Murray taking over the command.

Under Murray they fought at Second Newbury, Leicester and Naseby where the Regiment was almost entirely captured.

Percy was dismissed from service as it was alleged that he was complicit with Lord Henry Wilmot's secret attempts to negotiate a peace treaty with the Earl of Essex.

Sir William Pennyman’s Regiment of Foot

Believed to be one of the first Regiments to be raised in support of the King.
Sir William Pennyman commanded a  Yorkshire Trained Band which was raised in 1639 and fought in the First Bishops War (they are believed to have worn grey coats).

This incarnation was raised in 1642, many of Sir William's Trained Band joining his regiment of volunteers.

Believed to have been at the siege of Hull, they fought at Edgehill, Brentford and were present at the Turnham Green standoff. They stormed Marlborough before taking up a garrison posting in Oxford. Venturing out of Oxford with Prince Rupert to storm Cirencester, and fight at the Battle of Caversham Bridge.
Sir William died in the Oxford 'epidemic' of August 1643 (Pennyman Papers held at Hull University  Archives). It is believed that there was a large outbreak of typhus in the Thame valley, and this was what the phrase 'the epidemic' referred to; although outbreaks of plague were also common place, so plague too is a po…

The Battles of Middlewich

The ECW Travelogue returns with it's first socially distanced entry.

The First Battle of Middlewich, 13th March 1643

The First Battle saw Sir William Brereton's Parliamentarian army  take on the Royalists of Sir Thomas Aston.

Aston arrived in Middlewich with 500 horse, about 1000 Trained Band soldiers, and 3 pieces of artillery on Saturday 11th March. The next day Brereton sent a small detachment of dragoons to harass Aston's men. Meanwhile Lord Brereton was marching from Chester with another Royalist force. Sir William Brereton called for Parliamentarian reinforcements from Nantwich.

By the Monday morning the Nantwich reinforcements had failed to materialise, so Sir William attacked with 200 musketeers and all of his cavalry. Aston sent dragoons to distract Sir William's men, and was told not to engage with the enemy. Unfortunately they didn't obey orders and the Parliamentarians took control of one of the main roads into Middlewich. Aston reinforced the Parliament…