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Richard III from Heneage 1862.
The Bosworth Campaign

Richard III had become king by deposing Edward V in 1483. Many resented this and, with Yorkist support for Richard concentrated mainly in the north, there was a new opportunity for a Lancastrian pretender to challenge for the throne. After an abortive rebellion in 1483, the Lancastrian pretender, Henry Tudor, mounted a new challenge in the summer of 1485. Yet another cycle of the Wars of the Roses was beginning, though as events turned out it was the end game of this most bloody period of civil war in England.

The campaigns of the Wars of the Roses were typically short lived, of just a few weeks, with both sides making the best use of the limited time for which the troops, particularly the shire and city levies, could be kept in the field. The Bosworth campaign was no exception. But this proved to be the most important campaign of this whole period of civil war.

Against all the odds, the battle of Bosworth left Richard, the last Plantagenet king, dead on the field and placed the Duke of Richmond on the throne as Henry VII, the first of a new Tudor dynasty. It is true that the new king’s position was not wholly secure, and within two years he would have to fight off a Yorkist challenge, at Stoke. But in reality, the Wars of the Roses had been decided at Bosworth, on Redemore field, on the 22nd August 1485.


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