Wooler and Glendale

Gateway to the Cheviot Hills

The Battle of Hedgeley Moor

The Battle of Hedgeley Moor on 25 April 1464, was a battle of the Wars of the Roses.

In mid April of 1464, John Neville, 1st Marquess of Montagu was marching North to attend meetings with Scottish envoys at Newcastle. His popularity meant that supporters flocked to his banner throughout the journey and by the time he left Newcastle, he was in charge of an army numbering five or six thousand men.

At Hedgley Moor in Northumberland he met a rebel force, consisting mainly of Lancastrians the King had pardoned, returned to their true colors. The Lancastrians were commanded by the Duke of Somerset and amongst their number were Sir Ralph Percy, Lords Roos and Hungerford, and Sir Ralph Grey. The Lancastrian army was five thousand strong, but morale was not as high as in the Yorkist camp.
The battle began with the normal exchange of archery between the two armies. Montagu then advanced across the 1,500 yards of moorland, only to be forced to halt and readjust his lines when the Lancastrian left flank, under Lords Roos and Hungerford, (some 2,000 men) faltered, broke and scattered.

The whole Lancastrian force gave way when the Yorkists clashed with their line. Pushed back by weight of numbers all but a few of the remaining Lancastrians fled the field. Sir Ralph Percy stayed with his household retainers and made a brave last stand. But, deserted by the rest of the army, including all the other commanders, he was soon slain.

Visitor notes. A small lay by opposite A&J Scotts woodyard allows entry to an area that was the middle of the battlefield. Some stones and information boards inside a small wood.

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