Friday 10 November 2023

Battle of Stratton. Cornwall, England, 16th May 1643.

 This is my interpretation of this battle. Any mistakes are my own.

After the indecisive battle at Edgehill, there were skirmishes up and down the country as both sides vied for control of villages, towns and cities. Very often, one side or the other would retire after a few shots were fired or after one side made a determined charge.

By April of 1643, many areas had had enough of the random violence  and locally agreed ceasefires were in place. There were even groups of “Clubmen”. People so armed who would gang up on any soldiers from either side who entered the area intent on plunder.

Both sides used these moments to recruit more men into their formations. One such Armistice was in force in the Counties of Devon and Cornwall. In early April a Dutch and French ship landed 1500 muskets and munitions for the Royalist troops in the area.

Halfway through April of 1643, this truce came to an end. A Parliamentary force of 1,500 Infantry and 200 Cavalry advanced from Okehampton over the Tamar. This river ran north-south between the two Counties of Devon and Cornwall.

As this force, led by James Chudleigh, advanced over the Poulson bridge heading for Launceston, it was spotted from  Beacon Hill, a local eminence. The action started as a skirmish amongst the hedgerow with the Royalists being pushed back.

However, as more Royalist reinforcements arrived, the attack stalled. The Parliamentary forces were forced to retreat back to Okehampton.

A few days later, the Royalist commander, Sir Ralph Hopton decided to launch a counter offensive. The Royalist army of 3,000 foot, 300 Cavalry and 300 Dragoons moved East over the Poulson Bridge toward Okehampton.

However, Chudleigh was a skillful Commander and, with just a hundred Troopers pulled off an effective ambush. It was the turn of the Royalists to retreat.

Having been forced back to Launceston Hopton was not happy. He was expecting Prince Maurice, ( Rupert’s brother and nephew of King Charles) to join him in another attack.

Before Hopton could get moving, he found out that Parliamentary General Stamford was already on his way to stop the Royalist muster. Stamford’s force of 5,400 Infantry, 200 Cavalry and 13 guns was mustered from all over Devon.

Stamford arrived in the area and deployed his force atop a hill, half a mile from Stratton where another Royalist General, Sir Bevil Grenville had his troops. Hoptons troops were outnumbered two to one, however after speaking with his Generals, Hopton decided to attack. Using their knowledge of the area the Royalists managed to get into position quite early in the day undetected by the Parliamentary troops.

Hopton arranged his troops into four columns and when all was ready, launched the attack……..


5,400 Foot = 5.4 pts x 8 = 43points;

6 stands of Pike @ 3 points =18 points.

12 stands of Muskets @ 2 pts = 24 pts.

1 General  ( Stamford )  @ 1 point.

200 Horse 0.200 pts x 8 = 1.6 or 2 pts r/u = 2 stands of Cavalry @ 1 point = 2 pts.

13 guns e.w 50 gunners = 650 gunners = 0.650 pts x 8 = 5 pts r/d =

3 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 pt = 3 points.

1 stand of Heavy Artillery     @  2 points.


2,400 Foot = 2.4 pts = 19 pts.

8 stands of Pikemen @ 1 pt = 8 pts.

8 stands of Muskets  @ 1 pt = 8 pts.

1 General ( Basset )  @  1 pt.

1 General ( Slanning )  @ 1 pt.

1 General  ( Grenville )  @ 1 pt.

500 Horse = 0.500 pts x 8 = 4 pts. =

2 stands of Cavalry  @ 1 pt = 2 pts.

1 General ( Hopton )  @ 2 pts.

8 Guns e.w 60 gunners = 480 = 0.480 pts x 8 =

3.840 or 4 pts r/u = 4 stands of Light Artillery @ 1 pt = 4 pts.


* The Royalists take the first Game-Turn.

* The Royalists retain the Initiative Point for the entire battle.

* The Royalsts win any ties.

* The hedgerow only impedes Cavalry and Artillery movement. Deduct one point when firing at a target behind hedgerow.

* Any Parliamentary stands not being able to” move- back” or ending up in the stream, are removed from play. The points of these stands are deducted from the morale total of the army.

* Stands cannot enter a square with a tree on it.


* The morale totals are;

Parliament: 50 points.

Royalists;  27 points.

* The respective totals are halved and then SWOPPED OVER.

Parliament. 14 pts r/u.

Royalists.  25 pts.

* As stands are removed, their individual points are removed from their respective morale totals.

* The game finishes at the end of the 8th Game-Turn OR, when one sides morale total reaches zero.


Once again I’ve used the Peter Dennis paper figures ( purchased from Helion ). The guns are scratchbuilt from buttons, cardboard and cocktail sticks. The village was also also made from foamboard and illustrations from the book. These were photocopied in A5 at a local Printers, cut out and stuck on.

The hedgerow was made from pan scrubbers, the roads and river from thin card.

The cloth is 3 feet ( 90 cm ) x 2 feet ( 60cm ) with 2 inch ( 50 mm ) squares drawn on it.


The details of this battle were obtained from The English Civil War, An Atlas and Concise History of the Wars of The Three Kingdoms 1639-51 by Nick Lipscombe.


  1. Your homemade artillery is excellent!

    1. Thanks very much Martin, much appreciated 👍 Mike Smith.