History comes to life: The Battle of Tewkesbury
Join the Companions of the Black Bear and experience the horror which befell this quiet country town in May 1471.
The Date: May 4th 1471
The Lancastrian force of about 6000 moved eventually from the walls just outside Tewkesbury Abbey - in the days when of course it was still a functioning abbey.
Historic architecture in Tewkesbury
This battle was one of a series later given the title 'The Wars of the Roses' – battles between those who supported the House of Lancaster and those who supported the House of York.
Queen Margaret of Anjou, determined to see her young son Prince Edward as the next monarch had landed at Weymouth and moved her Lancastrian forces through the West country hoping to link up with the Celtic Lancastrian supporters in North Wales.
Once they arrived in the town, the leaders of the Lancastrian force decide not to try to get the thousands of men and their equipment over the causeway. Believing that they had superior numbers they decided to make a stand at Tewkesbury.
The Yorkists waited overnight in the village, setting out in pursuit of their opponents on the 4th. One shrewd piece of strategy was to deploy a troop of 200 horsemen on the wooded hillside of the Deer Park.
The panic that set in amongst the Lancastrians fleeing to Tewkesbury and hoping for sanctuary in the Abbey is graphically conveyed in this 10-minute audio drama.
last updated: 08/04/2008 at 13:58