In 1262, it looked for all the world as though the royal party was back in control and the whole struggle for reform was over. But that was before you take into account the ability of Henry, Eleanor and their son to get up the collective English nose. So de Montfort was able to return and once again the battle was on. This time though, the royal party fought back right away, and won a string of victories. By March 1264, De Montfort was drinking at the last chance saloon.
Stirring up rebellion
In 1262, Henry and Eleanor should by rights have been able to finish any question of revolt. But instead their misrule continued, and each passing day re-affirmed that teh Provisions of Westminster had been lost, with the return of the Lusignan, and the restart of Eyres of Justices designed to raise money for the crown. But the really foolish move was to irritate the de Clare's; when Richard died, Henry and Eleanor refused to confirm the accession of his son the Red Earl, Gilbert de Clare, and tried to cripple Gilbert with the size of his mother's dower.
Henry finally cottoned up and confirmed the provisions of Oxford – but it was too late. In April 1263 a group of marcher lords asked de Montfort to return, and duly he returned.
1263-1264: Struggle for power
At first de Montfort carried all before him. He was well supported by magnates such as John de Warenne, Gilbert de Clare and even Richard of Cornwall. London declared for the rebels, and Eleanor and Henry were forced to retreat to the Tower.
Edward was not prepared to take this lying down. He and a group of his knights broke into the Temple Church and stole £1,000 worth of jewels and coin. While this heightened London's support for de Montfort, it allowed Edward to escape the city and raise the royal standard at Windsor. Queen Eleanor tried to join him, by sailing down the Thames on her barge – but much to her fury and that of Henry and Edward the Londoners on the bridge drove her back with mud, rotten vegetables and insults. Sadly, Edward and Eleanor were just the type to bear a grudge, and would never really forgive London the insult to the royal dignity.
Early in 1264, Louis IXth was asked to arbitrate between the barons and king.
The result was acomplete whitewash, and the complete rejection of the baronial claims. The ware then seemed to go from bad to worse for the Barons – with one exception – Gilbert de Clare's declaration for de Montfort. despite this, Henry was everywhere victorious, taking Northampton (and capturing Simon de Montfort Junior), Leicester and Nottingham before heading to the south coast.
In May 1264 de Montfort set out with his numerically inferior army to risk it all on one last throw of the dice.