Sunday, 16 August 2009

Battle of Otterburn 1388

On friday 14th August i was working around the battlefield of Otterburn cutting the grass around the car park and general maintenance and thought i would take some pictures and post them up on my blog.

Heres an account of the battle that ive taken from the web

In 1388 the Scots decided to take advantage of the disunity caused in England by the power struggle between King Richard II and the Lords Appellant by mounting a large scale cross-border raid. James, Earl of Douglas, led a force into Northumberland. As they returned northwards, the Scots paused at Otterburn where, in pursuit of a chivalric challenge to Douglas, Henry Percy ("Hotspur") led an English army into attack.
Arriving near Otterburn at evening, Percy launched a flanking attack with part of his force under the Lords Redmane and Ogyl, hoping to panic the Scots into fleeing straight into the main body of troops under Percy himself. But rather than taking flight, the Scots launched a surprise counter-attack on Percy's men. Fighting continued through the night, and eventually the Scots prevailed, although Douglas himself was killed. On the English side Henry Percy and twenty-one other knights were captured, and over 1,000 were killed.
The accounts of the battle are among the best descriptions of medieval chivalry and military tactics. The defeated Hotspur was eventually to meet his death at Shrewsbury in 1403 in an uprising against the King.
The open character of the battlefield in 1388 has been preserved over the years, although the grassland is improved. Scrubby woodland on the upper slopes helped to mask the flanking attacks by both sides.
The information board explaining the battle.
Percy's cross which has been moved from the orginal site of the battle abaout 150 yards away from the left of the picutre. Some say that the cross was place roughly in the position where Douglas was slain.

Roughly the area where the final stages of the battle was fought with the Scottish defeating the English. Also the possible area where Douglas was killed and the area where Percy's cross was moved from. the Wooded hill in the background is a possible area for the Scottish camp that was sacked during the battle.

Centre left of the battlefield showing the ridge that the English used to out flank the Scottish and raid their camp. the hill in the distance is also another possible site for the Scottish camp.

Centre Right of the battlefield this is the area the English advanced through from the right.

Roughly the area of the English starting postions to the right.

1 comment:

  1. Nice pics, yet another idea for a period to wargame