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Battle of Bothwell Bridge
22nd June 1679

As his reign progressed Charles II imposed increasingly extreme controls on non-conformity throughout his kingdoms. In 1679 this led to open revolt by Covenanters in south west Scotland.  Following the rebel success at Drumclog, a government army of about 5000, comprising both regular and militia forces, was sent north under the command of the Duke of Monmouth to engage the rebels at Bothwell Bridge.

The rebels lacked an effective commander, were poorly equipped and lacked training or significant military expertise. On the morning of the 22nd June one of the few rebel leaders with any military experience, Hackston, took the handful of experienced troops and briefly held the bridge across the river Clyde. But their ammunition soon ran out and they were forced to retreat, allowing Monmouths’ royal forces to cross the bridge and deploy on the south bank unopposed. The royal army then surrounded the rebels and, in what was little more than a skirmish despite the numbers involved, the rebellion was easily suppressed.

A REPORT ON THE SKIRMISH, PREPARED FOR HISTORIC SCOTLAND BY THE BATTLEFIELDS TRUST, IS AVAILABLE FROM THE DOWNLOAD AREA ON THE LEFT

 

   
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