Tuesday, 2 February 2016

November 1688 - An alternative history...

William advances on London

It is November 1688 and William of Orange has landed in Devon at the head of a Dutch army. His aim is to depose the King of England, Scotland and Ireland and place his wife, James' daughter Mary on the throne. That is the history, here I diverge. Rather than indecision and eventually fleeing, James has decided to fight. He has lost some troops and a few commanders, but many are waiting to see who is going to win before nailing their colours to anyones mast.

William is hoping that English commanders and troops will come over to him, and that James' unpopularity will benefit him. William is marching slowly towards London, hoping to put pressure on King James.

Heading further east William finds that King James has garrisoned a small town on an important crossing point on his path to London. William has had reports from his spies that James' army is 2 days march away so he chooses to attack...

Figures are the excellent League of Augsburg range from Pendraken Miniatures 

Looking from William's position towards the town
Looking towards Williams position

William's right wing horse seek a crossing further upstream from the town

Fierce fire from the defenders halts the initial advance
The Dutch advance to the river taking casualties from the defenders as they do so.
The Swiss troops having cleared the gun from the bridge run into a hail of gunfire
Dutch advancing in waves towards the town
The Dutch Guards charge across the shallow river into well prepared English defence
The Guards defeated retreat behind their friends for cover
The fight around the bridge hots up
The Dutch left flank infantry brigade heads for the ford
The Dutch cavalry find a crossing point, with Guards dashing headlong for the English, forgetting their friends
The outnumbered English continue to offer up stiff resistance 
Their friends having caught up, the Dutch Guards lead the attack on the English cavalry reserve
William's turncoat English and Scottish regiments charge across the ford easily dispersing a hastily assembled force of armed townspeople
The English foot reserve looking isolated facing a Dutch cavalry brigade
William's information was wrong, was it false information from spies? James' army was a lot nearer. A brigade of cavalry appears on Williams left flank at the start of turn 7
Also a brigade of horse rides into the town from the nearby woods
Confusion reigned after defeating the townspeople, the turncoats failed to move from the ford for 2 turns
The joy of Pike & Shotte rules, the Dutch Guards trying to rally blundered and retreated back behind the river
Aided by the stalling turncoats and the arrival of James' cavalry the defence of the town looks a lot less difficult
Finally moving, the turncoats mass to take the town
The cavalry clash on William's left wing with the English faring the worst
King James' troops are still some way away from the main battle
James' cavalry getting ready to charge the Dutch right wing
William is redeploying his troops to face the new threat from James
The aftermath of the cavalry battle, a shattered Dutch right wing and the English cavalry still relatively fresh
A brigade of infantry arrive from William's camp
Looking towards William's left flank, the Dutch & allies in the town have been repulsed. It is late in the day as James is marshalling his forces for a final assault. 
End of the final turn, William stages a well organised withdrawal from the field as night comes in. James' forces held the town and William's army came off worst but it is still in reasonable shape, as James was unable to finish off William's army before nightfall. 

There will be a follow up battle, but will James suffer any more troops or commanders deserting his cause?


  1. Cracking batrep, really good swinging back and forth there :)

  2. An excellent batrep Ian, looking forward to more!!

  3. A great looking game, nice batrep!

  4. An excellent blog post and a beautiful looking game!

  5. An excellent looking game I hope we will see more!