This year is the 550th anniversary of the Battle of Tewkesbury, and—justifiably—Gloucester wants a piece of the celebratory action. After all, Gloucester did contribute a lot to the outcome, by ensuring Margaret and her forces were obliged to take a stand in a place they wouldn’t have chosen. The queen wanted to pass through the… Continue reading Gloucester’s contribution to the Battle of Tewkesbury….
My home city of Gloucester has always appreciated Richard III, and in 1983, to celebrate it being 500 years since he’d granted Gloucester its charter, a new wood was planted to honour him. It’s on Alney Island, which is land between two channels of the River Severn on the western outskirts of the city. From… Continue reading Richard III’s woodland in Gloucester….
Thanks to a post on the Richard III Society Forum, I was steered to the following interesting Ian Arthurson article about medieval spying. We know that the Tudors excelled in this dangerous world, but it’s not so well known that it was quite rife during the Wars of the Roses as well. Royalty—and the Church—always… Continue reading Medieval spies….
“….But the yeere 1606, the fourth of King James, the ryver of Severn rose upon a sodeyn Tuesday mornyng the 20 of January beyng the full pryme day and hyghest tyde after the change of the moone by reason of a myghty strong western wynde….” John Paul, Vicar of Almondsbury In ‘A True Report of… Continue reading Was it a spring tide in 1607? Was it a storm? No, it was a tsunami! Or was it….?
28th October is a notable day for me because of three events in Gloucester’s history:- (1) It was the day my second favourite king, Richard II was in Gloucester and Tewkesbury—well, he was from 20th October 1378 until mid-November, so had to be in one or the other on the 28th. (2) It was also… Continue reading Gloucester on 28th October, 1378, 1483 and 1967….
Following his coronation, Richard III – like all medieval monarchs – went on his “royal progress” through the realm. Along with an entourage in excess of 200 household men, ecclesiastics, supporters, and administrative officials, he visited towns and cities as far west as the River Severn, as far north as the River Ouse, and as… Continue reading The Royal Progress of Richard III
This post has nothing to do with Richard III, but concerns a great structure which, if it ever existed, would surely have been visible to him from the shore of South Wales. The intervening centuries have worn it down, of course, but he might—just might—have seen it. We are becoming accustomed to important ancient discoveries… Continue reading A huge stone port a mile off Cardiff…built by the ancient kings of Britain….?
Well, I’ve heard the tale of Sir Rhys ap Thomas hiding under a bridge for Henry to march over him on the way to Bosworth, thus not breaking Sir Rhys’s oath of loyalty to Richard, but this is a new one on me! Now we have this new variation, from http://tudortimes.co.uk/military-warfare/1485-battle-of-bosworth/henrys-march :- “. . .when… Continue reading Another myth about men “not breaking oaths to Richard”. . . .
I have often wondered why Richard chose a boar as his cognizance. There are other heraldic beasts and symbols that might have appealed to him, but it was a white boar that he chose. Why? Well, from all accounts, he was only a child when he made the decision, so what might have… Continue reading Did Richard hear the old Welsh legend of the Twrch Trwyth…..?
On this date, St Luke’s Day, 18th October, in 1483, apparently egged on by that notorious Lancastrian plotter, John Morton, Bishop of Ely, Henry Stafford, 2nd Duke of Buckingham unfurled his banners in rebellion against his cousin, King Richard III. Morton was supposedly Buckingham’s prisoner, handed over to him by Richard for safe keeping. Safe… Continue reading Just WHY did Buckingham think he could cross the flooded Severn….?