The Monmouth Rebellion

The Monmouth Rebellion

With Dr John Sadler

Battlefield Tours

4th - 7th July 2022
(4 Days)

Expert Historian : Dr John Sadler

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The Monmouth Rebellion

With Dr John Sadler

Battlefield Tours

Your Holiday Essentials

4th - 7th July 2022
(4 Days)

Expert Historian: Dr John Sadler

contact us for more information

Tour Introduction

In July 1685, near Bridgwater in Somerset, the Dule of Monmouth’s rebels were defeated by the Royal army under Lord Feversham at the Battle of Sedgemoor. It was the last pitched battle to be fought in England. Almost 1000 rebel soldiers were killed and many survivors, including the wounded, were imprisoned in nearby Westonzoyland church before being tried for their treason. Although Monmouth narrowly escaped the battlefield, three days later he too was captured after having been found cowering in a ditch during his abortive attempt to flee to the Dorset coast. Pleas for his life to his uncle, James II, and promises to betray his supporters fell on deaf ears and ten-days after his defeat he was beheaded at the Tower of London. He would not be alone: three hundred of his supporters would be executed following the Bloody Assizes of Judge Jeffries and many more would die of disease after transportation to the West Indies.

 

Background

This four day tour in the gently undulating verdant landscapes of southwest England follows the would-be usurper from his landing at the picturesque harbour of Lime Regis, through the golden walled Dorset villages from where unfortunate peasantry rallied to his standard to fight skirmishes at Bridport , Axminster and Ashill and through Somerset as they marched on Bridgwater and Taunton. Following a seemingly aimless figure of eight route to the outskirts of Bristol and Bath in search of further support, the tour culminates amidst the confusing dykes of the Somerset Levels at the decisive battlefield of Sedgemoor.

"When thy star is in trine,

Between darkness and shine,

Duke Monmouth, Duke Monmouth,

Beware of the Rhine!"

Unknown soothsayer

Itinerary

Day 1. Raising the standard. Midday arrival at Taunton hotel, our base for the tour, After a sandwich lunch and briefing we travel to Lyme Regis to see where Monmouth landed and thence follow his initial route and skirmishes at Bridport, Axminster and Ashill.


Day 2. Cat and Mouse. We follow Monmouth as he marched through Somerset in search of support but the Royalist forces were gradually closing the net around him. we follow his forlorn journey through the setbacks at Glastonbury, Shepton Mallet, Frome and Wells and the sharp skirmishes at Keynsham and Philips Norton.


Day 3. Battle. We consider the Duke’s high and lows at Bridgewater and visit the Blake Museum with its battlefield exhibits, thence to Sedgemoor where we trace the approach of the rebel army, climb St Mary’s church tower to, like Monmouth, ‘spy’ on the royalist forces, tour the battlefield and the surrounding villages of Chedzoy, Middlezoy, Othery and Westonzoyland church which cruelly held rebel prisoners until the infamous Bloody Assizes.


Day 4. Taunton. We discuss Monmouth’s ‘coronation’ at the Market Cross. Thence to Taunton castle to the ‘Rebellion’ gallery and the Somerset Military History Museum. Return to our hotel and disperse.

Dr John Sadler

Dr John Sadler

Dr John Sadler is a lawyer, a lecturer in war studies at the University of Sunderland Centre for Lifelong Learning and an experienced battlefield tour guide, widely published on the themes of the Border and Scottish Wars. He is an acknowledged authority on armour, weapons and fighting styles of the period and adopts an interactive approach with his audience with demonstrations of swordplay, musket drill and the odd dash of drama! He sees delivery as much a performance as a lecture!

Your Holiday Essentials

4th - 7th July 2022
(4 Days)

Expert Historian: Dr John Sadler

contact us for more information

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