The English Civil War: January 1643
Goring escaped from captivity in Portsmouth and made his way to join Hopton in Cornwall.*
Hull assured Parliament of its continued support for the cause. Parliamentary supporters in Preston made it known to Brereton, the local Parliamentarian commander, that there was significant support for their cause in the town and an attack coordinated with an uprising would surely give them control of the town.
The Earl of Essex marched East to Newport, to cover the route from Oxford to London. Essex had considered a direct strike on Oxford, but felt it was more important to position himself to the East of that city first: Oxford was clearly in a position to hold out a while yet. King Charles continues to lay siege to that place. Foppington moved to Worcester and began to lay siege to that place, but lost a third of his army to sickness and desertion.
Byron moved to Chichester. Hopton moved to Bridgewater to threaten both Bedford and Massey. He left Goring on Dartmoor to watch Waller in Plymouth.
Brereton moved from Manchester to Preston. Derby tried to intercept him en route but failed. As promised, an uprising from a section of the town's inhabitants allowed Brereton to seize place in short order, with the garrison surrendering or melting away into the populace.
Newcastle and the Fairfaxes did not move, both sides continuing to train their Horse. Cavendish moved from Newcastle to Grimsby to begin recruiting for the Royalists there.
Marquis of Newcastle at Hexham with c.7000
Earl of Forth at York with c.1000
Earl of Derby at Blackburn with c.3000
Cavendish at Grimsby with c.1000
c.1000 at Carlisle
The Fairfaxes at Richmond with c.6000
Brereton at Preston with c.2000
c.1000 at Hull
c.1000 at Newark
c.1000 at Chester
c.1000 at Worcester
Foppington with c.2000 besieging Worcester
Wark with c.4000 in The Fens
c.1000 at Nottingham
King Charles with 15,000 besieging Oxford
c.2000 at Basing
Byron with c.2000 at Chichester
Hopton with c.7000 at Bridgewater
Goring with c.2000 on Dartmoor
Earl of Essex with c.12000 at Newport
c.1000 under siege in Oxford
Stamford with c.4000 in Reading
Hampden with c.4000 in London
Willoughby with c.1000 in Colchester
Massey with c.2000 in Bristol
Bedford with c.7000 at Dorchester
Another quiet month, as yet again the opportunity to bring a force to battle was missed by the incompetence of the Royalist commander involved! This had worse consequences for the Royalists this month - the early fall of Preston. The situation is quite confused and everything can change, but the Parliamentarians have thus far managed to seize an impressive number of strongholds: Carlisle, Preston, Oxford and Reading, plus they have re-captured Gloucester. So although the Royalist field armies are still strong, it is upon the Royalists to try and leverage that to regain some ground.
*There are no rules for escaped prisoners in The King's War, but there are rules for prisoner exchanges. However, I had forgotten that Brooke should have been captured at Ettington, so I decided I would make Goring escape to make up for it.