Beware of Pikemen, Musketeers and Harquebusiers!!

Press Release: 09/08/2005

A leaflet describing a walk round the Civil War battlefield at Cheriton has been produced by Winchester City Council's museums service to coincide with the re-enactments of the battle on Sunday 28 and Monday 29 August.

As well as describing the main elements of the battle itself, the leaflet provides background information on the Civil War in Hampshire and Winchester. It outlines the situation as it would have been seen by a bystander at various times of the day on the 29 March 1644. The route takes modern ramblers into the heart of the area of the battle, and highlights the important strategic locations of the encounter.

Cllr Therese Evans, the City Council's portfolio holder for Culture, Heritage and Sport said: "The Battle of Cheriton was one of the defining moments in the Civil War in the south. I am pleased that the leaflet, produced by the City Council's Museums Service in partnership with local landowners and specialist societies, will to help raise awareness of the importance of Cheriton and celebrate this significant event in our local history".

Dick Whinney, the Council's Principal Heritage Services Officer, added "The production of this leaflet is the culmination of a lot of hard work by members of the Museums team, in collaboration with specialist Civil War historians and re-enactment groups. We are particularly pleased that it will be available in time for the forthcoming re-enactment of the Battle of Cheriton, over the Bank Holiday, 28-29 August.

On 29 March 1644, a battle took place on the downs outside the central Hampshire village of Cheriton. Here, in a day long encounter, after years of bloody civil war, Royalists fought Parliamentarians for effective control of central southern England. At the end of the battle, Cromwell's forces under the command of William Wallace were victorious, and forced the King's supporters, led by Ralph Hopton, to retreat northwards.

Battle of Cheriton Re-enactment
This major event takes the form of a Heritage and History Weekend with military history displays, rural activities, craft shows, stalls and assorted entertainment. Thousands of Civil War soldiers, dozens of cannons and over one hundred cavalry will create a spectacle not seen since the 17th century.

Days: Sunday 28th August, Monday 29th August. Place: Scrubbs Farm, Bishop's Sutton, Winchester. Signposted by the AA from main approach roads. Time: 11am - 5.30pm. Battle re-enactments at 3pm both days. Enquiries: 01962 736 029

Harquebusiers: There were two types of cavalry, the Cuirassiers who were heavily armoured and carried pistols, carbines and sword, and the Harquebusiers, who formed the bulk of the cavalry at Cheriton, who used similar weapons but were less heavily armoured and therefore more manouevrable.