165 Bloodshed

In 1455, the quality and nature of the arguments and disputes about the king's fitness to reign and the need to reform the way England was governed changed very significantly. At St Albans, blood was spilled. 

165 Bloodshed

St Albans 1455In 1455, Henry, newly restored to sanity, issued writs for an odd sounding parliament at Leicester. Salisbury, Warwick and York didn't buy it  - here was another set up, just like Dartford. So they gathered an army, and marched, professing their loyalty as they went. 

Somerset and the king seemed blind to the dangers, and set off from London none the less. At Albans, they suddenly realised they were in trouble, facing an army of 3,000, while the king had only 2,000 with him. Henry sacked Somerset in an attempt to appease York – but to no avail. The battle of St Albans was joined. 






8 thoughts on “165 Bloodshed

  1. David,
    THAT’S why the Marcher Lords were so powerful! Thanks so much I’ve always wondered. One the one hand, it seems sort of obvious why consolidated territory would be both financially and militarily more efficient but I’d be interested in any detail you could give – any way to quantify the advantages? Also one wonders how in god’s name the rest of the lords would be able to administer their holdings at all with so many dispersed lands – did you say hundreds of dispersed holdings? Does that mean hundreds of local bailiffs and direct “employees: administering for each lord, or were lands “owned” by major magnates farmed out to petty nobles? Any idea how many lords had separate holdings and how many minor lords had single contiguous holdings? If, as is likely you’ve addressed the structure of the nobility’s holdings before, a push towards the episode would be great. Thanks. – James

  2. The broad lay out of the streets in St Albans is still the same and some still bear the same names such as Sopwell and Hollowell (Holywell). There’s no Cock Lane anymore but there is a Cock pub on the corner. Sadly the pubs mentioned in the map and podcast have gone but there are several town centre pubs still in existence which are likely to have around at this time (the Boot, the Fleur de Lys (now the Snug) and the Fighting Cocks). Presumably they cancelled the pub quiz that night. Anyway, it makes my shopping trips around St Albans more fun to imagine arrows pinging my way as I nip into Waterstones.

  3. Um.
    What’s wrong with this episode on the iPhone podcast app!?
    It’s playing two guys speaking in… some language other than English! It’s totally the wrong podcast. It played properly when it first came out. I know because I’d listened to the first fifteen or so minutes. Just now, when I tried to play it, it’s doing what I just described. Help?

  4. Joe, now fixed.
    Simon, isn’t that the lovely thing about history? watching the impressions it’s made on the world around us, being able to visualise all the lives that have passed through the places we live in.

  5. Ah David, as if your podcast wasn’t enough to win me over, but now you’ve revealed your love for boardgames and Led Zeppelin too (I had my suspicions since first hearing the lovely rendition of Blackwaterside), and now an avowed Yorkist. If ever the need should arise to raise the county or issue your own commissions of array (even if its just to lead a charge on the local pub to grab a pint), you can count on me to don the noble badge of the shed ha ha

    1. Trent, now that I know I can raise a faction I’l go and find some Lancastrian to insult and the drum sergeant will be coming your way! I shall tell Davie you liked his rendition while I am at it, thanks!

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