Historical & Field Society


The Battle of Worcester in 1651 was the final battle of the English Civil War. Charles II with his mainly Scottish army were soundly defeated. After the battle,

the king was a wanted man with a reward of £1000 offered for his capture. There are many stories surrounding his escape, not least of which was hiding in an oak tree at Boscobel House to escape a Parliamentary patrol. It is thought that on his way North he stopped at what is now the ‘King’s Arms’ at Ombersley for refreshment and then onwards to Stourbridge.

As our speaker this month, Max Keen, asked us. How do you get to Stourbridge from Ombersley other than through Hagley? So here we have a very local connection with Charles II even if no ‘Blue Plaque’ marks the occasion. It was a brave decision to pass through Stourbridge as is had a Parliamentary garrison. We were told that he openly walked down the High Street speaking French. As unlikely as it sounds the ruse worked as by the 17th century there were many French speaking glassmakers in Stourbridge.

After many escapades he escaped from the South coast to France. How was it that he was not caught? Some think that after the disquiet of the execution of his father there was no appetite to repeat it and so he was pursued just sufficiently hard enough to keep him moving and ensure that he ended up where he could do no further harm.

We have no meeting in August so our next meeting at St Saviour’s Church Hall is on Tuesday 5 September 2017 at 8.00pm. Dr. Kate Round will give a presentation entitled “Stourbridge  Glassmakers - on the Move”. Visitors are most welcome at all our events – see hhfs.org.uk for details and contacts.

Jeff Cope
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Last update: Thursday 17 August 2017

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