Thursday, 18 March 2010

The Battle of Whalley (Revisited)

An English Civil War Battle between the Earl of Derby (Royalist) and the Parliamentary forces under the command of Bereton. Played in 6mm using the Perfect Captain rules
As per the original the parliamentary forces were hidden from view at the start of the battle with only the presence of dragoon’s to tempt the royalist forces forward. The Royalist commander sent forward Tyldsley’s regiment and Houghton’s horse to chase them away and to take possession of Read Hall which lay astride the two roads leading north from Whalley.

After a feint forward the parliament dragoon’s retired to the hall and took up a defensive position. The parliamentarian cavalry to the North and East of Read Hall showed themselves to draw Houghton’s horse away from the Hall and leave the shot to deal with Tyldesley’s regiment. As the royalist horse passed the hall the parliament dragoon’s fires inflicting some slight damage but alerting the royalist forces in Whalley.

Tyldesley’s regiment were advancing further East than parliament had hoped for and while the dragoons held of the royalist shot the remainder of the troops had to reveal themselves from the cornfields, where they had taken a fortified position behind the enclosing walls, and advance towards the pike. To the East the parliament horse advanced in caracole with ineffective shooting before the royalists charged in to melee. This fight first went to the royalists who gradually pushed the parliament horse back up the hill before they rallied and then forced their way down again.

In the centre both Tyldesley’s shot and pike had taken heavy casualties and were withdrawing towards Whalley but the remainder of the royalist forces were now starting to arrive on both flanks. The parliament dragoon’s attempted to ride out and finish them before the reinforcements arrived but were threatened by Derby’s horse and had to retire back to the hall. To the West the remainder of the parliament forces retired back to the cornfields in the face of superior forces.

The rules play well but with slight differences for different periods we occasionally get confused with which rule to apply.

Words: Adrian