The significance of Edward's first reign up to 1465

The Lancastrian rebellion

  • Margaret's army was a lot smaller than Edwards
  • It took place in winter so the campaign was tough for the armies as the conditions were bleak in Northumberland so some of the Yorkists deserted, but enough remained to lay siege to the Castles and Bamburgh and Dunstanburgh were surrendered on 24th Dec
  • Edward contracted measles in Durham so had to leave his army and Warwick assumed command but was under order from the King to not destroy the castles but starve the garrisons into submission
  • Only Alnwick held firm and their determination was rewarded when they were relieved by a Scottish army. 
  • Warwick allowed the garrison at Alnwick to march and join the Scots army which has been seen as an act of cowardice, but it may have been the only option as his men were suffering in the winter conditions and morale was low. 
  • Yorkists didn't have hold of the 3 castles in Northumberland for long and in April 1463 Sir Ralph Percy let the Lancastrians back into Bamburgh and Dunstanburgh castles. 
  • In Alnwick, Sir John Grey (Lancastrian), agreed to remain there under Yorkist Sir John Astley who was seized and Alnwick returned to Lancastrian hands
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The seige at Norham on the Tweed

  • The Lancastrians now had the support of the Scottish army and were led by King James III of Scotland, the dowager Queen of Scots, Mary of Guelders, Margaret of Anjou and Henry VI who laid siege to the border of the fortress of Norham on the Tweed in July 1463.
  • Edward managed to raise a grant from parliament to raise an army to confront the Scots but he failed to complete the bargain. 
  • Warwick and Montagu confronted the Scots at Norham and the Scottish force fled. The Nevilles used this as an excuse to make a small raid into Scotland but nothing else was done about the Northumberland castles that were still in Lancastrian hands
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Agreements with Louis XI and Scotland

  • Agreed on a truce with Louis XI which stated that Louis XI would no longer provide aid to Henry VI and his Lancastrian supporters
  • Henry VI was no longer welcome in Edinburgh and had to retreat to Bamburgh Castle.
  • Lancastrians isolated
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The Battle of Hedgely Moor

  • Sir Ralph Percy was killed 
  • Lord Montagu successfully fought off his attackers who were under the leadership of the Duke of Somerset and Lords Roos and Hungerford
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The Battle of Hexam

  • Duke of Somerset, Lords Roos and Hungerford were executed
  • Henry VI escaped
  • Montagu put a final end to Lancastrian resistance in the north having lost the principle commanders the Lancastrian garrisons in the castles had no choice other than to surrender 
  • Sir Ralph Grey boldly fought on at Bamburgh castle most likely because he knew he would be shown no mercy. He was captured and executed following the surrender on Alnwick castle
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Policy of Conciliation

  •  The policy of conciliation failed
  • Gave Sir Ralph Percy castles in the North, who later handed them back to Lancastrian hands
  • Showed people that he would punish people who needed punishing, but pardoned people who didn't do too much wrong
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Marriage to Elizabeth Woodville

  • This was the start of the worsening of relations between Warwick and Edward as the marriage was kept a secret while Warwick went to France to find Edward a French Princess to marry to form an alliance with France which wasn't formed because Edward married Elizabeth instead. 
  • The Woodville family married alot of the powerful nobles, elevating their family, which meant that there were less powerful men for Warwick's daughter's to marry. 
  • It angered a lot of the nobles as they had fewer people to marry.
  • The Woodvilles had a stronger influence over Edward than Warwick
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Capture of Henry VI

  • Henry was captured in July 1465 near Clitheroe and was imprisoned in the Tower of London
  • After this, the only remaining center of Lancastrian resistance was Harlech in Wales which was surrendered in 1468 following the failed French-baked expedition led by Jasper Tudor. 
  • Warwick helped to capture him, in the hope that Edward would reward him with allowing his daughters to marry Edward's brothers which he refused.
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