Raising the Standard

  • 19th August 1745 The Royal Standard is raised by Prince Charles, said to be a bit of a ladies man (Andy) at Glenfinnan...with Great augusto 6 clans gather around the Prince eager to put a Stuart once more on the throne. Lord Murray (Pete), renown for his duellist skills offers his services, Despite being Pardoned for his involvement in the previous risings of '15 and '19, maybe this time he was feeling more confident! Lord Murray even supplied out of his own pocket the raising of a troop of horse.

    With no delay the Jacobites decided to March on Edinburgh. Sir John Cope (Dave) a natural leader decided to waste no time and attempt to cut off the jacobite forces before they could reach the City. If only he could manage to find his Co-commander that bleedin foreigner the Baron Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben (Bryan) rumoured to be once more partaking in the less reputable parts of town.

    Such was the haste of the Government forces they decided not to await for the Barons Hessian regiment...to be fair it would have taken far too long to round them all up out of the whore houses!

    The Government forces arrived outside the hamlet of Prestonpans early on 21st September, a particularly damp foggy morning. They had no sooner approached the Hamlet when through the fog they started to hear....bagpipes??................

  • As the mist cleared (not very much) over the barren, dank, landscape (yes that's right - we are in Scotland). The forces of the German pretender roused themselves from their billets (and in some cases whore houses) to stagger on to the desolate moor outside of Edinburgh. Clearly the Baron was not committed to the cause and Sir John was a talentless amateur . Not much for the forces of true King to overcome.

    Prestonpans. Special effects allow you to see the battlefield. Were it not for said effects you'd be looking at a picture of a cloud with rain inside it.

    With unerring accuracy (considering they couldn't see past the end of their noses) the clansmen launched themselves into the dank swirling mist, perhaps

    their upbringing in desolate , rain sodden, foggy environment allowed them to sense where their enemy was - or maybe it was the odour of cheap perfume and sour beer coming from the Hanovarian forces. Whatever it was the forces of the true king set about the task with gusto.

    Close up of the disconsolate, bedraggled Hanovarians (Craig's really nice Marlburians)

    And their opponents, the breechless and barbarian Scots

    There was confusion in the Hanovarian ranks from the start with Sir John dipping into the Hokey Cokey tactical playbook by advancing then withdrawing then realigning. The Baron looked on in bewilderment - probably wishing he was back in the whore house.

    Showing more tactical acumen than was ever the case historically the Stewart forces offered a withdrawn centre with just the gentleman volunteers cavalry present there. The clan funelled their advance down the flanks.

    Ruthless exploitation of the volunteer cavalry by Charlie saw them wiped out by repeated Hanovarian musketry and grape but not until they'd occupied a few rounds of shooting and seen off an infantry and cavalry Hanovarian unit.

    Repeated failings to shoot by the Hanovarians meant that even when they emerged from the mist the clansmen weren't taking heavy casulaties and The Princes clan punched a hole through Sir John's Hokey Cokey line. The Baron meanwhile was captured by the clansmen after fighting around the small mean hamlet on the right flank. Clearly these were not the Scots in skirts that he was used to getting up close and personal with.

    Damp powder and even damper spirts prevailed as the Hanovarian forces were overrun. That gap in the middle by the way is where the cannon used to be!

    The Baron's bedraggled forces being overrun

    With this rousing victory three more clans raised for the Bonnie Prince . Surprisingly though the good citizens of Edinburgh did not seem to welcome their wild country cousins (perhaps they preferred the Germans who paid for services rendered) and they barred the gates to the city.

    Unpeturbed the Stewart forces left one clan to lay seige to Edinburgh and moved on to take Carslile.

    Apparently the Government forces are keen to offer battle so it's next stop Carslile. If the Stewarts can take the dismal Scottish weather with them they may be in with a chance!

  • After the somewhat surprising defeat of the Govenment forces at the bloody field of Prestonpans the Jacobites intoxicated with victory (and maybe the odd wee dram) marched across the border into green fields of England. Well the Brownish moors of Cumbria anyway.

    On the road to Carlisle on the 14th November they reached the outskirts of the town of Canonbie...Heading towards them they could make out the flags of no less than 6 battalions of Government troops. It looks like the Government troops from Newcastle werent taking too kindly to an invasion of Northern England. Canonbie holds a vital crossroads that would be beneficial to both forces.

  • And so on a misty (yes the Scottish weather had travelled with the Jacobites south of the border) November morning the army of the Bonnie Prince was confronted by General Wade's government forces outside of Carlisle. Quite why the General had decided to defend this god forsaken corner of England was not clear. His troops were not happy leaving their billets in Newcastle but Wade was a Natural Leader (re-roll failed activations - one per move) and confident he could stop the Jacobites in their tracks. His Aid de Campe was the competent but German Colonel Horst von Winklehof. He had Foreigner (no morale bonus to his units) - so europeans unpopular in the North East - a bit like Brexit but 275 years early.

    The scene on the morning of the battle just as before this is brought to you by special effect. Were it not for said effects all you'd be able to see would be a cloud with rain in it. This time though the fog cleared aftter 2 moves- it wasn't actual Scotland after all.

    General Wade's reluctant troops

    And the Bonnie Princes bonnie lads

    Again showing more sophisticated tactics than they ever had the historic capability for the clan took advantage of the initial fog to swerve to the right and centre throwing all their weight on to a limited front.

    Before launching into the attack proper though the clan had to occupy two out of the three miserable hovels on the battlefield. It's not clear why. Something to do with honour. Perhaps they found some grog or pillage, perhaps they wanted to show the English they could pooh on their hearths and homes. Whatever they set about the task with gusto. One unit achieved it's two moves and emerged bandishing chamber pots and wooden plates - clearly the looting wasn't up to much. It's not recorded if they left any small presents in the hearth.

    For their part the government forces under Von winklehof sent cavalry units forward to tempt the clan out into rash charges. Clearly they were a house proud lot and didn't want the breechless hordes in their homes.

    This worked in a fashion but resulted in a cavalry unit being destroyed in fighting.

    Von winklehof's finest riding to their demise at the hands of the chamberpot weilding clan.

    Whilst all this was going on General Wade spotted a walled enclosure. His seasoned military eye judged it would make a good redoubt and he piled his troops into it. There were murmerings from the ranks (failed activations) but Wade florished his feathered hat with vigour and urged his men on. Everything was working well.

    Wade's full military accumen on display

    The clan who'd fallen behind in the race for the chamberpots threw themselves against Wade's natural redoubt.

    Wade's forces vollied furiously with the good general overcoming the ominously regular failed activations by brandishing his bright cockade and vigorously cajoling his troops on.

    The clan eager to make up for losing out in the chamberpot and wooden plate dash

    Wade's boys vollied some more and even managed a drawn combat and some cannon fire. All the while Wade was vigorously waving his plumed tricorn reversing failed activations. As the clan managed more control than they'd ever done historically they lined up several units to charge Wade's boys redoubt but the'd been taking casualties. One good round of shooting would see off 3 clan and the gentleman gallopers.

    An early misfire caused nervousness in the general's staff but never fear - he had his gay cockade. All he had to do was wave it vigorously. The general duly obliged- nothing. He waved more vigorously still, called out a brave boo-hulluh- nothing. Von Winklehof's forces also failed to shoot.

    What happened next was doubtless the inspiration for the Purge films and TV series as hordes of demented scottish hillbilly equivalents overran the hitherto impregnable redoubt scattering all before them.

    To his credit Wade went down fighting (double 1).

    Really this should be credited at the start of the Purge. Those of a sensitive disposition should avert their gaze.

    With the redoubt fallen the clan rampaged through the centre of the government forces as the Hanovarians collapsed.

    There's not much military vision needed to see the Hanovarians are in as much pooh here as there is in those hovels just vacated by the clan.

    And that was it. Wade it turned out had received a minor wound and was rescued from the debacle by loyal troops.

    The Jacobites looked upon a rich kingdom that lay open to them - well actually it was just a rain sodden Carslile but that was an improvent on the damp moorland that they'd recently vacated.

    So flush with victory and honour points off to Derby for Charlie and his lads where that viscious, sausage munching, Duke of Cumberland awaited with his Flanders veterans.

  • After Destroying General Wades forces at Canonbie the Jacobite’s continued south to Preston on 26 November, then, Manchester on 28th, where they received the first notable intake of English recruits. 2 Regiments were raised from the city of Manchester (some were rumoured to be less than willing participants) These were formed into the Manchester Regiments, commanded by a willing Englishman Francis Towneley, a Lancashire Catholic; he previously served as an officer in the French Army and his elder brother Richard narrowly escaped execution for his part in the 1715 Rising.

    Entering Derby on the 4 December the Jacobite’s had a decision to make. Having proved their point but now being far from home…do they fall back into Scotland and await the long-promised supplies and men from France or make a dash for London before the rather portly Duke of Cumberland can return to England with his Army of Flanders. Having so far trounced all before them the Prince was feeling particularly buoyant…Onward for the Crown of England…

    So on the 5 December the Jacobite Army with a change of history marched for London…unbeknown to them Cumberland had already landed in England and was marching to head them off..

    On the outskirts of Trowley Bottom the forces were destined to meet. This would be a tough battle for the Jacobites against a well proven formidable Army….could they do it again!

  • The Battle of Trowley Bottom

    Flushed with success and whiskey and loaded down with looted exotic trinkets (like the previously mentioned bedpans). The Bonnie Prince’s Clan based forces marched south from Carlisle, via Manchester on to sunny climes of Derbyshire (everything is relative when you are comparing it to a fog bound sodden moor in Scotland).

    They’d hoped to evade the returning veteran army of The Butcher Cumberland TM and make a dash for the capital to install Charlie on the throne without further interference. Unfortunately a horde of semi drunk Scots hill billies were hard to contain and the scouting system left a lot to be desired.

    The upshot of all this was that as the Jacobites blundered towards Derby they were met at the outskirts in the small village of Trowley Bottom by The Butcher TM and his army of Flanders veterans.

    The ground could not have been worse. Trowley Bottom sat on the south side of a river that could only be crossed at the Trowley Bottom bridge or a ford upstream. The Butcher TM sat with his forces on the south side, the Jacobites had had little success recruiting in England, just two raw militia regiments and an artillery piece. Apparently the prospect of marching south with a horde of highlanders in a state of semi perpetual drunkenness was not that appealing.

    Worse still the Butchers TM forces were all veterans (19% more points value than Jacobites- 47 pts v 56 pts) and it was sunny to boot, even the weather had deserted the Jacobites.

    The spoilt second son and so far military failure Cumberland for his part was eager to establish his reputation and a historical trade mark to boot. He’d been practicing his fencing and his leadership trait allowed him to re-roll two misses in a combat. He sat astride his barrel bellied white charger at the head of a unit of scarlet clad gallopers. ‘Sweet William’ was his favoured epithet unfortunately his enemies (and brother) had a more fitting sobriquet ‘ The Butcher’ sort of an 18th century equivalent of a WWE nickname except with real blood and dead babies. Whatever facing an enemy armed with the equivalent of sharpened sticks today he felt was his day for glory.

    A river runs through it- not the picturesque Montana but in this case the rather more ill favoured Trowley Bottom.

    The eastern flank Charlie stares down Cumberland across a Gainsborough looking rural idylic ford on the river

    Murray's lads eyeing Trowley Bottom

    And Sir Rodericks force lining up the gun sights and relishing the prospect of an 18th century equivalent of a free fire zone

    The clan looked disconsolately at the now empty whiskey jars and contemplated an imminent future of hot lead and cold steel that awaited them.

    A scots advisor clearly confusing the difference between attack and defence or the limitations of being armed solely with sharpened bits of steel was heard to opine that it was better to wait on the north bank! Charlie wavered momentarily but decided that some motivation was needed and gathering himself took up the challenge. ‘Look over there my brave highland laddies’, the Bonnie Prince trilled at his ragged force as they lined up at the ford. ‘ I hear the sweet clinking of silver coins, all you need to do is go over there and take them from those freshly paid Redcoats purses.’

    There was murmuring in the ranks. One unit of clan decided Charlie was a few sandwiches short of a picnic and slunk away from the field ( double 1 activation). Things were bad and now worse. The Butcher TM waited glowering across the ford .

    These clan were clearly unimpressed by Charlies offer of silver awaiting them on the south bank

    Charlie looked around concerned, what was he to do? Fortunately he was with his forlorn hope of gentleman adventurers. They gathered him up and plunged headlong into the ford, the clan followed. Charlie at the head of his charging Jacobites – not what he envisaged when he staked his claim to the throne. Any sounds he made were drowned out in the roar but fortunately he was wearing his brown silk pantaloons.

    Charlie surging forward supported only by brawny scots arms and a misplaced sense of optimism.

    On the western flank Murray tried a different tack. Noting to the clan their empty whiskey jugs he told them that intelligence just received had said that the Flirty Maiden pub in Trowley Bottom had just taken delivery of its monthly beer and spirits order and all the clan had to do was charge across the bridge, see off the Redcoats and help themselves. That proved more successful than the promise of silver and the whole of his force surged forward for the bridge fighting with each other to be first across.

    On the southern bank Sir Roderick Pettygrew, 2iC to The Butcher TM awaited with dragoons, infantry and artillery, all lined up to make the bridge a perfect killing zone.

    Murray's clan fight each other to get to the Flirty Maiden, the cav have already charged so far ahead they are out of the picture.

    Back on the eastern flank Charlie’s units were blasted back across the ford by the Redcoats but no sooner had he recovered himself at the relief of being back on the north bank than they charged back into the ford again . ‘Merde’ he was heard to shriek as his clan and gentleman adventurers headed directly for The Butcher’s TM Redcoats. The charge fell short and the Redcoats levelled muskets. Charlie contemplated his fate and probably wished he was back in the sunny climes of Italy. The Butcher TM ordered ‘fire’ – nothing (first unit to activate failed). Perhaps the order was drowned out by the wild highland cheer or the shrieking of the Prince. The Jacobites ploughed into the Redcoats and hard fighting ensued but the clan were hacking and slashing wildly and getting the better of it.

    Meanwhile Murray’s forces with gentleman gallopers to the fore, they moved the fastest, headed straight for the artillery. Surely it was suicide. What happened next was four turns of the worst activation rolls probably ever seen at the club. You know how it is, there’s always a game someone harks back to in the dim and distant past where the dice rolling was terrible. Well this will be it for the foreseeable future at Wigan.

    None of the vaunted veterans fired. The cavalry rode over the guns and broke an infantry unit before being destroyed by Sir Roderick’s unit but not without pushing him back to the table edge – and that was just one unit. There were five others following. Sir Roderick and all his infantry fled the field leaving the dragoons to carry out some desultory skirmishing before also fleeing. Against all the odds Trowley Bottom was in Jacobite hands. Murray barred the door to the Flirty Maiden and ordered his clan units to charge towards the eastern flank.

    The one third strength (but still unbroken) cav unit have already seen off a gun and inf unit, all that stands between them and the Flirty Maiden is Sir Roderick

    On the eastern flank The Butcher’s TM forces had performed better but were down to two galloper and two (soon to be one) infantry unit. Charlie’s forces were pretty much spent however and there was just him and a few gentleman adventurers left. The Butcher TM gathered his scarlet coated gallopers to finish the Prince off. Charlie had got quite carried away with things but now decided the life of hacking and slashing was not for him and wisely retreated into some nearby woods.

    Charlie no longer borne forth on brawny scots arms and with reality kicking in looks around for a handy stand of trees

    With Murray’s total force now hurtling towards him (furious that he was holding them up from accessing the grog) The Butcher TM made a similar wise decision and rode south for London and a final stand leaving Charlie’s forces to the delights of Derby- it is not recorded what the citizens of Derby thought of this.

    Murray's seething highlanders head towards Cumberland

    So against all the odds the Jacobites have won their third battle of the campaign and it’s on to London with Charlie firmly having one hand on the coveted crown.

  • The 6th of December is a date forever remembered by the House of Hannover. The hopes of quelling the rebellion were all but lost on the bloody fields of Trowley Bottom. The only blessing was that the Kings youngest son, The Duke of Cumberland managed to survive the slaughter.

    Now nothing stands in the way of the Scottish Hoarde as it decends on the outskirts of London. With one hand already on the English crown the only thing standing between them and glory is the household guard and whatever miltia can be raised to stop the rebellion from succeeding!

    The King himself rather than fleeing for the coast will lead his Glourious troops into battle with his son the Duke at his side. Is the house of Hannover destined to fall!

  • The Battle of Hampstead Heath

    No its not as the title may suggest some hipsters fighting ove the final supply of the week of Sourdough Bloomers and organic Ethiopian coffee beans rather we are in the final throws of the Campaign of the '45 as Charlie and his wild highland laddies descend upon London to eject George from the throne and restore a Jacobite monarchy.

    As a brief summary of the actions so far the Jacobites have given a royal ass-whuping to the Hanovarians from the desolate moors of Scotland to the manicured lawns of the home counties. That's it really, when it came to loosing battles the Hanovarians contrived to make the impossible look easy.

    So as the early summer sun kissed the green fields of 18th century Hampstead the Duke of Cumberland marched out of London to face the Bonnie Prince.

    Unlike the last battle at Trowley Bottom where he'd managed to squander the opportunity to throw back the pretender and lost his veteran army of Flanders toboot here he was backed by the palace guard units (nice uniforms but untested in battle) and the London militias. He had a new second in command, Gaston Le Pew, Comte de Bitche. Unlike his predecessors Gaston had manged to avoid rolling foreigner so did have some influence on his command. Cumberland retained Lion of the North so installed himself at the head of one of the galloper units. 'Zos cavalry are roux so are ma infantry' shouted Gaston in his best 'allo allo accent. 'Yes, yes ' replied the Duke impatiently waving his sub ordinate away 'they are in red, all our side are in red. You'll know the enemy because they are smelly and don't wear trousers'! He made a note to get a subordinate who didn't state the bleeding obvious for his next battle.

    For the Jacobites Charlie retained his brutal trait. Lord Murray however, due to past successful actions, had gained so many traits he wore them like purity seals. All he needed was a multi melter and power armour and he'd stroll across the battlefield like an 18th century space marine. The jacobites were now joined by a force of english raised jacobites (they were hanovarians the week before) clearly everyone except Cumberland had read the script. Lord Stokley-Carmichael was in command though only had the ladies man trait but rolled a double 6 and gained an extra unit with his first activation making an already numerically superior rebel force even stronger (now 60 pts v 47 pts). Cumberland didn't seem to notice.

    18th Century Hampstead Heath, home even then to a superior organic produce shop and a wellbeing physician.

    Cumberland ordered his troops into the cover of the buildings and his cavalry to the fore. 'Zey are roux' yelled Gaston. Cumberland ignored him.

    For their part the Jacobites thumbed through their tactical playbook. Being as it consisted of one page containing the tactic 'charge' that's what they did.

    The Jacobite's demonstrating their mastery of their tactical manual.

    Should I charge those fellows in front questioned Cumberland pointing to a ragged English Jacobite unit of line. ' Zey are roux' shouted Gaston. 'Clearly they aren't' hurumphed Cumberland ' it's our chaps in the red and theirs in the ragged with bare arses'! Put off by their bold advance he held off his charge on the raw line. They promptley delivered a telling volley killing half of Cumberlan's cavalry unit. Worse followed as the Scots gentlemen cavalry charged and routed the other Hanovarian cavalry unit.

    On the flanks Charlies clan charged towards the entrenched guard units and Murray's terminators , sorry clan, hit Gaston's defensive line. Impressively Gaston fighting with raw units threw back three assaults. Even fighting a drawn personal combat with the 18th century Primarch equivalent, Murray.

    Gaston holding the line

    Things were going less well for Cumberland's flank. Charlie's clan were amongst the guard units and the English Jacobite shooting was causing casualties.

    Things going badly for Cumberland's flank. All those finest faretrade cotton undegarmants and bamboo hemp shirts the jacobites are about to capture from the organic haberdashers will be completely wasted on the clansmen

    Panicking as the Scots gentlemen cavalry faced up to attack Cumberland's depleted cavalry he shouted to the nearest of Gaston's infantry to fire on the Scot's cavalry. At the same time a unit of clan was squaring up to attack the same infantry as they sheltered behind the stone wall. 'Zes are roux' shouted Gaston. 'I don't care what colour their coats are get them firing in support of my unit' ordered Cumberland.

    Reluctanly Gaston gave the order. As the smoke cleared all the Scot's remained in their saddles. 'What was that supposed to be?' 'Zey are roux, your cavalry are roux everyone is roux,' yelled Gaston. It was only at that point that Cumberland belatedly realised Gaston wasn't referring to the colour of their coats rather the state of their morale.

    He didn't have long to dwell on his misinterpretation of a French accented raw /roux as the Scots cavalry charged and destroyed Cumberland's cavalry unit taking him prisoner.

    To make matters worse the raw infantry that directed their volley at the cavalry were charged and routed by the clan who having suffered no shooting didn't even have to risk a morale roll.

    With the breech in Gaston's line Murray's forces re-charged and broke through. Gaston gave up on a bad job and fled the field as his raw units were destroyed as easily as Charlie's clan routed the 'guard' units on the opposite flank.

    With that the game was over and the crown changed hands from Hanover to Stewart as George fled back to his ancestral schloss.

    The remaing pics show the final stages of the debacle of Hampstead Heath

    Thanks to Craig for organising a nice campagn and everyone else who joined in.