History Podcasts

Tewkesbury Battlefield

Tewkesbury Battlefield

A definitive battle of the Wars of the Roses, the Battle of Tewkesbury was a resounding defeat for the Lancastrians, which led to 12 years of relative peace in England from 1471 until Edward IV’s unexpected death in 1483.

Tewkesbury Battlefield history

In April 1471, the Lancastrian queen Margaret of Anjou landed with her troops at Weymouth, where they were joined with reinforcements by the Duke of Somerset. They expected that the advance troops, led by the Earl of Warwick, would have made some headway in defeating Edward IV’s army. Warwick had indeed fought with Edward IV at the Battle of Barnet, yet had been defeated and killed in the process.

Edward IV meanwhile was in Windsor, and soon realised that he would have to intercept the Lancastrians before they arrived in Wales. The Lancastrian army detoured to Bristol for supplies, were refused entry to Gloucester by its citizens and so marched north, hoping to cross the river Severn at Tewkesbury.

With Edward’s army in pursuit, Somerset arrived at Tewkesbury and decided to make a stand. He deployed his troops, numbering about 5,000, in an area of pastureland just south of Tewkesbury Abbey flanked by two streams. On arrival, Edward chose to deploy his army of about 4,000 men south of, and parallel with, Somerset’s.

The battle began the morning of 4 May, 1471 and lasted several hours, during which the Lancastrians lost 2,000 men and the Yorkists around 500. Among the Lancastrian dead was the Prince of Wales, son of Margaret of Anjou and Henry VI. With the death of their heir and the imprisonment of both Henry VI (who was later murdered in the Tower of London) and Queen Margaret, the Lancastrians’ hold on the throne of England seemed lost.

Tewkesbury Battlefield today

Today the east side of Tewkesbury Battlefield is now covered by a housing development, yet the western part is accessible by public footpath and serves as agricultural land.

There is a monument to the Battle of Tewkesbury in front of Tewkesbury Abbey where Edward, Prince of Wales is buried, and the Abbey itself is a wonderful historic building well worth a visit. The remains of George, Duke of Clarence (brother of King Edward) and his wife, Isabelle (daughter of the Earl of Warwick) were also brought there for burial.

It is worth noting that, as with many medieval battlefields, there is some controversy about the exact location of the Battle of Tewkesbury, however a marked trail allows visitors to walk some of the locations generally accepted as key sites of the battle.

Getting Tewkesbury Battlefield

Tewkesbury Battlefield is located in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire just west of the M5. A number of buses run to Tewkesbury, with the nearest stop to the site at the Council Offices, a 4-minute walk away. The nearest train station is also Ashchurch for Tewkesbury, a 15-minute drive or 30-minute bus journey to the site.

The Unfought Battle of Tewkesbury

In 1939 and 1940, Britain and France had assumed that the forthcoming battles with German forces in continental Europe would be largely a repeat of World War I: their defence plans, as well as their tactics and their equipment, largely reflected that. The British sent an Expeditionary Force [BEF] to fight alongside the French, as they had 25 years before – but with both armies having apparently forgotten some of the lessons of the Great War. Since then, the Germans had developed their all-arms ‘Blitzkrieg’ techniques which included the use of paratroops or glider-borne troops to capture key points behind the opposition’s front line.

The simultaneous attacks on Holland, Belgium and France had come in the early hours of 10 May 1940. On 14 May, Anthony Eden, the newly appointed Secretary of State for War in the Churchill government (itself only formed on 10 May), announced on the radio that men were wanted throughout the country to form the Local Defence Volunteers [LDV], whose initial role would be: to keep watch for enemy parachutists, report their presence to the regular forces, disable them as best they could and man the fixed defences in their locality. Their role would rapidly expand to include guiding regular counter-attack forces through their area of responsibility help the police man traffic control points on all roads entering towns and villages, particularly at night, to check for enemy agents and saboteurs place a guard on so-called vulnerable points to prevent acts of sabotage or destruction and immobilise petrol stocks and any vehicles that might be utilised by the Germans. With the promise of weapons and uniforms, the response to this call, by men not already in military service, was immediate and widespread. The force, which nationally was to reach almost two million men, and some women at its peak, was quickly renamed the Home Guard at the behest of Winston Churchill. A large proportion of these volunteers had served previously, many in the Great War, and had experienced fighting the Germans: they did not require any urging to take on the old foe!

  • Airborne landings on the Berkshire and Newbury Downs,
  • Airborne landings elsewhere directed against aerodromes and vital centres,
  • Seaborne landings in the Bristol area [2]

In the Central Midlands Area, the threats were envisaged as an AFV attack which may have broken through the beach defences to a considerable depth and found its way inland, and a large scale airborne attack. [3] In order to protect the West Midlands, a series of ‘stop-lines’ based on existing river and canal systems, together with a number of urban areas designated as ‘anti-tank islands’, were planned to surround this key aircraft and armaments-producing area. [4] Tewkesbury occupied an important position in the defences around the West Midlands, linking two major stop lines formed by the rivers Severn and Avon. The town was designated as an anti-tank island (under the command of the RASC Depot at Ashchurch) but, sadly, no detailed defence plans for the town have so far been discovered. [5]

The underlying principle of these defence measures was to confine the movement of enemy AFVs and to hamper them further at focal points of communications (essentially major road junctions within anti-tank islands). Anti-tank island defences were to be a ring of anti-tank obstacles around the area, consisting of buildings and natural obstacles, supplemented with road blocks, rail blocks and short lengths of anti-tank ditches or anti-tank scaffolding. Anti-tank minefields were to be laid on ‘action-stations’ and defended localities were to be prepared to cover the anti-tank obstacles. [6] Potential landing grounds for enemy troop carrying aircraft were to be obstructed by various means including trenching, as on the Tewkesbury Ham, or by poles or old cars set out in a pattern across the open space. All these methods were used in the Midlands, following the issue of instructions to local authorities, which were to carry out the work required. A number of mobile counter-attack columns have been identified for Worcestershire which no doubt would have come to the aid of Tewkesbury, including one at Norton Barracks and, from Malvern, three organised by an infantry brigade and another by the Royal Navy (HMS Duke). The infantry training centre in Gloucester also formed a column and no doubt there were others in Gloucestershire. All anti-aircraft gun batteries, searchlight sites and barrage balloon sites were to create a defence perimeter around their individual sites and take on any enemy troops in their vicinity. Both a ‘Bofors’ light anti-aircraft gun [LAA] and a searchlight were located on the road to Bredon, and more Bofors were located around the Ashchurch Depot, while a searchlight battery headquarters occupied The Mythe.

Instructions for the employment of the Home Guard explained that the primary duty was to obstruct the enemy, harass him, destroying him wherever possible. The Home Guard were to achieve this by holding defensively their own towns and villages. All defensive localities were to be held to the last man and last round. Road blocks were to be capable of being placed in position or removed in ten minutes (to allow counter-attack forces through). The road on the far side (presumably meaning the enemy side) of the block was to be covered by defensive positions. These positions were to be manned on action-stations. It was recommended that the best defensive work was a well concealed infantry trench. Few trenches can now be identified, having been back-filled at the end of the war, but they were dug in their hundreds by the Home Guard throughout the Midlands.

Tewkesbury's Home Guard

Tewkesbury’s Home Guard was part of the 1st Gloucestershire Battalion which had responsibility for defence of Cheltenham (itself initially designated as an anti-tank island) as well as the rural area to the north as far as Twyning, and stretching from Forthampton and Apperley in the west to Toddington and Winchcombe in the east. The whole of the rural area was the responsibility of A-Company but, by the end of 1940, it was clear that the area covered was too great. The Tewkesbury District force was therefore separated to become E-Company, numbering about 250 men, and was commanded by Captain Philipson-Stow, with Lieutenant Comins as second-in-command. Platoon officers were: Lieutenant A.E. Berry for Tewkesbury, including Forthampton and Chaceley Lieutenant S. Bass for Coombe Hill and Lieutenant B. Fletcher for Twyning. The Mill and the Forthampton Sections of the Tewkesbury Platoon were later separated to form another platoon under the command of Lieutenant John W. Healing.

Apparently, under the guidance of Lieutenant Burgess, E-Company became pioneers of flame throwing, demonstrations being given in Tewkesbury and at Aggs Hill, Cheltenham. The Company was fortunate in having good NCOs, veterans of the Great War, and, with assistance of instructors from Cheltenham, it soon gave a good account of itself in tests for preparedness and efficiency. Bombing practice was carried out on the Ham, while shooting was conducted at Bushley and Forthampton, achieving a respectable degree of efficiency. The arrival of rifles and automatic weapons from America in July 1940 meant that the initial shortage of Home Guard weapons was quickly corrected.

The Defences of Tewkesbury

What of the defences, remembered by Brian Linnell? These are shown in the diagram along with others gleaned from aerial photographs and interviews with local people. The location of most of the pillboxes is corroborated by a map showing the location and notes dealing with the demolition of them held by the Gloucestershire Archives. [8] It has become fashionable to denigrate the efforts of the British Home Defence planners of 1940 and, indeed, the Home Guard, partly encouraged by the impression given by the Dad’s Army TV comedy. Sadly, Brian fell into that trap! The reality was different and although the sites shown on Figure 1 were the most obvious defence features, there will have been a significant number of less obvious defences in and around Tewkesbury. As an example, some of the ‘gaps’ identified by Brian would almost certainly have been used to locate anti-tank mines. These would have been stored in the town ready for use in the event of an attack developing in the vicinity. Nevertheless, from what we know, a clear pattern of defence can be discerned, and this follows closely the approach taken in other anti-tank island defences (where original defence plans have survived).

Responsibility for planning and organising the defences in the South Midlands Area was given to V-Corps, then based in Oxfordshire. Reconnaissance parties would survey the defence areas and mark out with pegs and paint the position of proposed defence works. They would then be followed by Royal Engineer Field Companies, which would requisition land and buildings needed for defence, and direct Pioneer Corps men, local authority labour and civil engineering companies in the construction of the defences. [9]

At Tewkesbury, the key objective for capture by the enemy would have been the river crossing provided by King John’s Bridge, in order to allow an armoured column to move north towards Birmingham. Speed was crucial and so parachute troops would have been used, probably dressed in British uniforms in an attempt to confuse the defenders. These would have been dropped close to the bridge, probably on the Ham, followed by air-landed troops. The grid-pattern of trenches was dug there to deter troop-carrying aircraft from landing but, if they did land, to damage them so severely that they would be of little further use to the enemy. The emplacement at the north end of the Ham, remembered by Brian, was perfectly placed to sweep the Ham with machine gun fire, but it is likely that the two mills would have provided more fire positions. The approach of any enemy armoured column to Tewkesbury would have been seen and reported by the Observer Corps posts on Alderton Hill, Bredon Hill, Cleeve Hill, [10] or closer to the town by the various air defence troops in the vicinity. The Home Guard, too, would have had their outposts and observation posts to report on any enemy movements. Brian identifies one such post on the small hill to the south of the town, but others were likely on The Mythe Hill, on the roof of Healing’s Mill and on the Abbey Tower.

It is self-evident that the Severn, Avon, Mill Avon and Swilgate Rivers, the railway embankment to the north, and the closely packed buildings of the town, are more than adequate obstacles for armoured vehicles, obviating the need for barbed wire. Tanks and other military vehicles and urban areas do not mix, as was proved many times over during the war. Any vehicle is vulnerable to overhead attack with phosphorus grenades from the buildings overlooking them. The enemy column would therefore seek to pass through the town as quickly as possible using the roads, or go the long way around, thereby incurring delay, and probably meeting other defended areas to add to the delay.

Road blocks were therefore placed on all the main approaches to the town centre to delay the column. Should any of these blocks fail, then the blocks around the War Memorial would be where the critical battle for Tewkesbury’s roads would be fought. Known as ‘The Keep’, every anti-tank island had one located around the key road junction which, in those days before bypasses and motorways, was usually in the centre of town. Here, the surrounding buildings would have been prepared for defence by sandbagging windows and ‘loop-holing’ walls to provide fire positions overlooking the junction. It was also here that the garrison commander would locate his reserves, ready to counter-attack should any of the outer defences show signs of failing.

The ‘asparagus blocks’ mentioned by Brian are in fact known as ‘vertical rail blocks’ (see Figure 2) which, together with concrete cylinders, formed a more than adequate anti-tank block for the generally light tanks employed by the Germans early in the war. This type of block could be erected quickly, or dismantled to allow counter-attack forces through. The defence arrangements described by Brian around the Swilgate Bridge, to the south of the town, are the perfect tank trap: the brushwood filled ditch awaited any tank commander, seeking to avoid the block on the bridge by diverting into what is now the playing field! The fire positions in the vicinity would have deterred any enemy troops from climbing out of their tanks, or trying to dismantle the block. The anti-tank gun emplacements have been recorded on all the main river crossings on the Severn and Avon, and one still exists at Holt Fleet Bridge, west of Ombersley, Worcestershire. There must have been one at Tewkesbury, but where? It would be most likely to have been sited on the town side of the Avon, covering the critical block on King John’s Bridge, as well as the railway bridge over the river, to the north. Can anybody remember it? Perhaps the ‘pillbox’ at the north end of the High Street was the emplacement? The anti-aircraft Bofors gun on the Bredon Road, as indeed those around the Ashchurch Depot, would have been used in an anti-tank role, once enemy armour came within its range. The defences around this gun would have included a road block, probably under the railway bridge. Does anyone remember this?

Tewkesbury’s defences were not isolated, but part of a web of static defences throughout the Midlands, designed to enmesh enemy armoured columns and to prevent the rapid progress that such columns had enjoyed in France. Each defence area would impose delay on the enemy, even if the defenders were eventually overcome. Time would, therefore, have been bought to enable the mobile columns of the regular home defence forces to move into position for a counter-attack. Thankfully these arrangements were not tested in battle, although a number of Home Guard exercises with other units included a mock attack on the town.

The successful D-Day landings in France in June 1944, and the large numbers of American troops then in Britain, brought to an end the likelihood of a full-scale attack on the country by German forces (although spoiling and sabotage attacks on stores and communications by German parachutists were still considered to be possible). The steel used in the road blocks was quickly collected to make up for the shortage of metals in 1944. Pillboxes started to be demolished soon after the war was over. The American forces at Ashchurch apparently undertook some of this work in Tewkesbury. The Home Guard stood down in December 1944 and disbanded in December the following year. All that remains of Tewkesbury’s 1940s defences are the trenches which can still be seen on the Ham (despite what Brian said) and the blocked ‘loophole’ in the house to the south of the Swilgate Bridge. A concrete cylinder or two can just be glimpsed on the side of the road to the north of the town at Shuthonger. Further afield there are some remnants of the Avon Stop Line, notably at Eckington and Pershore bridges. As a result of his researches, the Author is in fact very impressed by the range of defences constructed and by the quality of thinking which was invested in the defence of Britain.

The Tewkesbury Historical Society

One of our members, Dr Peter Raggatt, who is a retired NHS Clinical Biochemist at Addenbrookes Hospital and Lecturer in Cambridge University School, was moved to research and write an article about this epidemic with its comparisons with the present pandemic. [see attached PDF above]

It links in with previous research on Cholera in Tewkesbury.

Such was the impact of these two epidemics on the town that a monument was commissioned which now resides in the Cemetery, adjacent to the ‘Cholera Pit’ where many victims received a mass night burial [see attached].

Although John Snow, clean water for the Mythe Waterworks and improved housing conditions have ensured that 1849 was the last appearance of cholera, the brutality which occurred in World War II Japanese POW camps caused the death of several Tewkesbury soldiers of cholera in 1943-44. Here is a biography of one of them, Frederick Key.

Smallpox was another medical curse of the18-19th centuries but by the late 19thC vaccinations were made compulsory and a significant number of people in Tewkesbury became anti-vaccination. For more on this familiar tale, see Martin Holt's award winning article.

Battle of Tewkesbury

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Battle of Tewkesbury, (May 4, 1471), in the English Wars of the Roses, the Yorkist king Edward IV’s final victory over his Lancastrian opponents. Edward, who had displaced the Lancastrian Henry VI in 1461, later quarreled with his powerful subject Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, and Warwick in 1470 restored Henry to the throne. In March 1471 Edward returned from Holland, defeating and killing Warwick at the Battle of Barnet on April 14. On that day King Henry’s queen, Margaret of Anjou, who had been in France with her son Prince Edward since 1462, landed at Weymouth, in Dorset, and moved northward to rally Lancastrian support in Wales. King Edward intercepted her army just south of Tewkesbury in Gloucestershire on May 3. Battle was joined the following day, each side numbering about 3,000 men. The Lancastrians had a strong defensive position, but a surprise Lancastrian attack on the Yorkist left miscarried, and the Yorkists broke the main Lancastrian position. About 1,000 men were killed, including Prince Edward and other Lancastrian leaders. The murder of Henry VI in the Tower of London (May 21–22) secured Edward’s position.


Battlefield series games usually focus on large, online multiplayer battles. Playing in squads has become a major element of games in the series.

Since Battlefield 2, the series centrally recorded online stats for each player, allowing users to receive rank promotions and weapon unlocks based on their performance as well as awards such as medals, ribbons, and pins.

A class system is present within all the Battlefield games. Each class features a different type of primary weapon along with different equipment, differentiating roles on the battlefield.

The ability to engage other players in melee combat with a knife has been present in Battlefield games. Since Battlefield 2142, the series has included an award of dog tags for each player killed using a knife. [2]

Titles in the Battlefield series
Year Engine Title Platform(s)
Win macOS PS2 Xbox PS3 X360 PS4 XONE PS5 XSX/S
2002 Refractor 1 Battlefield 1942 Yes Yes No No No No No No No No
2003 Battlefield 1942: The Road to Rome Yes Yes No No No No No No No No
Battlefield 1942: Secret Weapons of WWII Yes Yes No No No No No No No No
2004 Battlefield Vietnam Yes No No No No No No No No No
2005 Refractor 2 Battlefield 2 Yes No No No No No No No No No
RenderWare Battlefield 2: Modern Combat No No Yes Yes No Yes No No No No
Refractor 2 Battlefield 2: Special Forces Yes No No No No No No No No No
2006 Battlefield 2: Euro Force Yes No No No No No No No No No
Battlefield 2: Armored Fury Yes No No No No No No No No No
Battlefield 2142 Yes Yes No No No No No No No No
2007 Battlefield 2142: Northern Strike Yes Yes No No No No No No No No
2008 Frostbite 1.0 Battlefield: Bad Company No No No No Yes Yes No No No No
2009 Refractor 2 Battlefield Heroes Yes No No No No No No No No No
Frostbite 1.5 Battlefield 1943 No No No No Yes Yes No No No No
2010 Battlefield: Bad Company 2 Yes No No No Yes Yes No No No No
Battlefield: Bad Company 2: Vietnam Yes No No No Yes Yes No No No No
Refractor 2 Battlefield Online Yes No No No No No No No No No
2011 Battlefield Play4Free Yes No No No No No No No No No
Frostbite 2 Battlefield 3 Yes No No No Yes Yes No No No No
Battlefield 3: Back to Karkand Yes No No No Yes Yes No No No No
2012 Battlefield 3: Close Quarters Yes No No No Yes Yes No No No No
Battlefield 3: Armored Kill Yes No No No Yes Yes No No No No
Battlefield 3: Aftermath Yes No No No Yes Yes No No No No
2013 Battlefield 3: End Game Yes No No No Yes Yes No No No No
Frostbite 3 Battlefield 4 Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Battlefield 4: China Rising Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
2013/2014† Battlefield 4: Second Assault Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
2014 Battlefield 4: Naval Strike Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Battlefield 4: Dragon's Teeth Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Battlefield 4: Final Stand Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
2015 Battlefield 4: Weapons Crate Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Battlefield 4: Night Operations Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Battlefield 4: Community Operations Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Battlefield 4: Legacy Operations Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
Battlefield Hardline Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Battlefield Hardline: Criminal Activity Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Battlefield Hardline: Robbery Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Battlefield Hardline: Blackout Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
2016 Battlefield Hardline: Getaway Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Battlefield Hardline: Betrayal Yes No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No No
Battlefield 1 Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
2017 Battlefield 1: They Shall Not Pass Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
Battlefield 1: In the Name of the Tsar Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
Battlefield 1: Turning Tides Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
2018 Battlefield 1: Apocalypse Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
Battlefield V Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
Battlefield V: Overture Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
Battlefield V: Lightning Strikes Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
2019 Battlefield V: Trial By Fire Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
Battlefield V: Defying The Odds Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
Battlefield V: War in the Pacific Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
2020 Battlefield V: Into The Jungle Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
2021 Unknown Battlefield 2042 Yes No No No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes

■ DLC located directly below the title it was released for.

† Was released exclusively for Xbox One in 4th quarter 2013, then was released for the remaining platforms in 1st quarter 2014. [3]

Aggregate review scores
Game Year Metacritic
Battlefield 1942 2002 89/100 [4]
Battlefield Vietnam 2004 84/100 [5]
Battlefield 2 2005 91/100 [6]
Battlefield 2: Modern Combat 2005 PS2: 80/100 [7]
X360: 77/100 [8]
XBOX: 80/100 [9]
Battlefield 2142 2006 80/100 [10]
Battlefield: Bad Company 2008 PS3: 84/100 [11]
X360: 83/100 [12]
Battlefield Heroes 2009 69/100 [13]
Battlefield 1943 2009 PS3: 83/100 [14]
X360: 83/100 [15]
Battlefield: Bad Company 2 2010 IOS: 64/100 [16]
PC: 87/100 [17]
PS3: 88/100 [18]
X360: 88/100 [19]
Battlefield Online 2010
Battlefield Play4Free 2010 68/100 [20]
Battlefield 3 2011 PC: 89/100 [21]
PS3: 85/100 [22]
X360: 84/100 [23]
Battlefield 4 2013 PC: 81/100 [24]
PS3: 80/100 [25]
PS4: 85/100 [26]
X360: 79/100 [27]
XONE: 81/100 [28]
Battlefield Hardline 2015 PC: 71/100 [29]
PS4: 73/100 [30]
XONE: 71/100 [31]
Battlefield 1 2016 PC: 88/100 [32]
PS4: 89/100 [33]
XONE: 87/100 [34]
Battlefield V 2018 PC: 81/100 [35]
PS4: 73/100 [36]
XONE: 78/100 [37]
Battlefield 2042 2021

Battlefield 1942 was released on September 10, 2002, using the Refractor game engine, and set in World War II. It introduced the "Conquest" gameplay mode, in which players fought for "control points" throughout the map. Two expansion packs were released.

Battlefield Vietnam, released in 2004, moved the setting to the Vietnam War, and was built on an updated Refractor engine with various gameplay improvements, such as the ability to fire personal weapons while seated in vehicles, and visualizing dense foliage.

The 2005 release Battlefield 2 takes place in the modern day, depicting a war between the United States and China and the fictional Middle Eastern Coalition (MEC). Despite requiring numerous patches due to a large number of bugs and glitches in the game upon its release, it was a large commercial success, selling more than 2,250,000 copies worldwide, by July 2006. [38] One expansion pack, Special Forces, which added Russia, exclusive missions, and new weapons and gadgets, and two booster packs, Armored Fury (adding three new battles in the USA) and Euro Force (adding the European Union), were also released. A similar game called Battlefield 2: Modern Combat was released for consoles, with a larger single player mode but limited online play.

Battlefield 2142 was released in 2006, taking place during a global ice age in the 22nd century. While most of it is graphically similar to Battlefield 2, it introduced a variety of equipment to unlock and battles between two giant "Titan" airships. The Northern Strike expansion pack was later released, adding new maps, vehicles, and a new game mode. Its use of in-game advertising was controversial among players and not well received. [39]

Battlefield: Bad Company, released in 2008, is set in a near-future war between the United States and Russia, and follows a US Army company's escapades and their search for hidden gold. This new Battlefield game had a variety of vehicles for land, air and sea. It had a new destruction system that allowed the player to break and destroy environments, based on a new game engine named Frostbite, which replaced the Refractor engine used in earlier releases (with the exception of Battlefield 2: Modern Combat, which used RenderWare).

In 2009, EA released two download-only games, Battlefield Heroes, a free-to-play Refractor 2 engine game, supported by advertising and micropayments and Battlefield 1943, a Frostbite engine game, released in July 2009, for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, and was scheduled for release in Q1 2010, for PCs, but was cancelled. [40]

In 2010, a sequel to Battlefield: Bad Company, Battlefield: Bad Company 2, was released, involving "B" Company's search for an electromagnetic pulse weapon. It features a larger multiplayer than its predecessor Bad Company, with updated graphics and realistic effects (e.g. bullet-drop). The game introduced the rush game mode and brought in weapons. It features a "VIP" system of content distribution where player with VIP codes gain early access to new maps. DICE also released an expansion for Bad Company 2, Battlefield: Bad Company 2: Vietnam, setting the game in the Vietnam War.

Battlefield 3 was announced in 2009, [41] [42] and in 2010 it was confirmed that gamers who pre-ordered Medal of Honor Limited Edition would receive Battlefield 3 forty-eight hours before the open beta was released. On February 4, 2011, the first teaser trailer for the game was revealed, with a preliminary release in the Fall of 2011. [43] Among the features that remain in the game are Jets and the ability to go prone. The game allows 64 (on the PC) players as in all previous Battlefield titles, though the consoles allow for 24-player matches. The Battlefield 3 Beta was released on September 29, 2011. [44] Battlefield 3 was released on October 25, 2011 and has received high review scores and has received awards from IGN.

On November 5, 2010, EASY Studios announced a follow-up to its free-to-play Battlefield Heroes, Battlefield Play4Free. EASY develops the free-to-play variants of Battlefield. Its latest offering gives players the same free-to-play pricing structure of Heroes, while still offering a more serious, core Battlefield experience (as opposed to Heroes ' lighthearted, cartoon-styled environment). [45] Battlefield Play4Free went into open beta on April 4, 2011. [46]

On July 17, 2012, an advertisement appeared on EA's Origin webpage that players who pre-order Medal of Honor: Warfighter, would receive access to a Battlefield 4 Beta. Battlefield 4 was announced on March 26, 2013. A Beta for the game began on October 1 and ended on October 15. It was released on October 29, 2013.

Information about the next entry in the series, Battlefield Hardline, was leaked on May 27, 2014, and officially unveiled on June 9, 2014, during E3. The game was developed by Visceral Games and, unlike previous installments in the franchise, is centered around a cops-and-robbers theme.

In July 2015, CFO of EA Blake Jorgensen announced a new Battlefield title would be released in 2016. [47] [48] [49] This was followed up by Dan Vaderlind, EA DICE Development Director, announcing that since Star Wars Battlefront has been released, he will now be focused on the upcoming Battlefield title. [50] On May 6, 2016, Battlefield 1 was officially announced, with an official reveal trailer on YouTube, and was released on October 21, 2016. [51] [52]

The most recently released game in the series was officially revealed on May 23, 2018. The live reveal event confirmed that it is a WW2 game after several leaks suggested it would be set during this period, [53] its title is Battlefield V. Battlefield V was released later that year on November 20, 2018 while also offering certain players early access to the game as early as November 9, 2018. [54]

Battlefield: Bad Company 3 was an upcoming entry into the series, a follow-up to 2010's Battlefield: Bad Company 2. [55] [56] General Manager of DICE, Karl-Magnus Troedsson stated in a 2014 interview with Eurogamer that the game is not in active development as the studio doesn't know what exactly fans loved about the series as there has never been a clear line of the matter and they do not want to risk destroying the series. [57] Despite this, DICE has made it clear that they will be developing Bad Company 3 at some point. [58]

The next game after Battlefield V, Battlefield 2042, is an upcoming instalment in the series set to release in late 2021. During EA's 2020/2021 Q3 earnings call it was revealed that the game will be making use of the power that the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S offer, as well as featuring more players than ever in the online portion of the game. [59] Additionally, it will see major innovations in multiplayer, social, and competition aspects that are new to the franchise. [60]

In October 2012, Fox Broadcasting Company announced their intentions to make a one-hour-long television show based on Battlefield: Bad Company. [61] The show was to be written by executive producer John Eisendrath and co-produced by Patrick Bach and Patrick O'Brien of Electronic Arts, and Doug Robinson of Happy Madison. Nothing has been developed after their announcement. [62]

In July 2016, Paramount Television announced that it will adapt the game series for television. Anonymous Content's Michael Sugar and Ashley Zalta will executive produce. [63] Nothing has been announced since.

Key Facts:

Date: 4th May, 1471

War: Wars of the Roses

Location: Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire

Belligerents: Lancastrians and Yorkists

Victors: Yorkists

Numbers: Lancastrians 6,000, Yorkists 3,500

Casualties: Lancastrians 2,000, Yorkists unknown

Commanders: Duke of Somerset and Edward, Prince of Wales (Lancastrians), King Edward IV of England (Yorkists)

Tewkesbury Battlefield - History

The Tewkesbury Battlefield Society is a group of interested people who want to preserve, promote and interpret the history, archaeology and natural history of the sites associated with the battle for the present and future generations.

Working with the owners of the many sites associated with the Battle of Tewkesbury, the Society aims to raise public awareness of the events of the battle, and to promote the sites as an integrated educational resource.

We aim to encourage tourism and leisure activity by advertising, interpretation and presentation in connection with the sites.

We aim also to collate research into the Battle, and to encourage further research, making the results available to the public through a variety of media.

We aim to become the Authority on the battle and battle site

In pursuing our objects, we work alongside a variety of organisations, including public bodies and other charities, in Tewkesbury and throughout the world. We develop schemes and advocate projects, including fundraising for them, delivering them where it is within our ability, and project managing if appropriate.


To promote the permanent preservation of the battlefield and other sites associated with the Battle of Tewkesbury, 1471, as sites of historic interest, to the benefit of the public generally.

To promote the educational possibilities of the battlefield and associated sites, particularly in relation to medieval history.

To promote, for public benefit, research into matters associated with the sites, and to publish the useful results of such research.

Battle of Tewkesbury 550th: Roses remembered

'Margaret of Anjou Taken Prisoner After the Battle of Tewkesbury' by John Gilbert, 1875. Credit: pPublic domain sourced/Access rights from Art Collection 2/Alamy

This year marks two historic anniversaries for Tewkesbury. But what put this small Cotswolds town on the map?

A simple brass plaque in the quire of Tewkesbury Abbey commemorates the burial of Edward, the Lancastrian Prince of Wales who was killed at the Battle of Tewkesbury in 1471. The son of King Henry VI and Queen Margaret, he had been “the only light of his mother’s eyes and the last hope of his race.” From the vaulted abbey roof above, the Sun in Splendour looks down, a motif of the House of York installed by triumphant King Edward IV as a symbol of his victory in the Wars of the Roses.

The spectacular vaulted roof of Tewkesbury Abbey. Credit: Stuart Black/Alamy

Hostilities between the two royal factions of Lancaster and York would flare up again, but the decisive battle of Saturday 4 May 1471 that concluded the first phase of their wars firmly stamped Tewkesbury on the map of history, and in this 550th anniversary year many commemorations are planned. The abbey is also celebrating 900 years since its consecration in 1121.

Tewkesbury Abbey. Credit: eye35.pix/Alamy

The back-story of the Wars of the Roses, named after the emblems of the red rose of the House of Lancaster and the white rose of the House of York, is well known, with the two branches of the Plantagenet royal family descended from the children of King Edward III (r.1327–1377) locked in a vicious struggle over the throne. The wars had erupted in 1455 and by April 1471 the pleasure-loving yet ruthless Yorkist Edward IV had gained the ascendancy with a victory at the Battle of Barnet. Weak-minded Henry VI was in captivity but his wife, the ‘she wolf’ Margaret of Anjou, had returned from exile in France with their 17-year-old son Edward intent on reclaiming the Crown.

Margaret planned to raise forces in the southwest of England, cross the River Severn at Gloucester, and join supporters gathered from Wales by Jasper Tudor before marching on London. However the city of Gloucester refused Margaret entry and on 3 May 1471, with Yorkist troops hot on their heels, the Lancastrians found themselves cornered where the Severn meets the River Avon at Tewkesbury. Exhausted from marching, they set up camp south of the town. A fight was unavoidable.

Early in the misty morning of 4 May the Lancastrians chose their ground as best they could and split into three units with their backs to the abbey and town: the Duke of Somerset, in overall command, took the right flank Lord Wenlock and young Prince Edward shared the centre the Earl of Devonshire took the left. Ahead of them were “fowle lanes and depe dikes, and many hedges, with hylls, and valleys, a right evil place to approche, as cowlde well have been devised.”

Historic buildings line Church Street, where 17 prominent Lancastrians were executed in 1471. Credit: Paul Weston/Alamy

On his arrival Edward IV surveyed the scene and deployed his troops into three units too, with his brother the Duke of Gloucester to his left and his loyal Baron Hastings to his right. The Lancastrians outnumbered the Yorkists, c.6,000 versus c.3,500, but the Duke of Gloucester soon began to overpower the Duke of Somerset with “right-a-sharp shower of arrows and shot of gun”.

In a diversionary tactic, Somerset attacked the centre of the Yorkist army but was driven back into the sights of 200 mounted spearmen that Edward IV had fortuitously hidden in Tewkesbury Park’s woodland the spearmen charged and cut Somerset’s men to pieces.

Furious that the main Lancastrian forces had not come to his rescue, Somerset accused Wenlock of being a traitor and, according to some reports, “strake [his] braynes out of his hedde.” In the mêlée that followed Lancastrians took flight and were slaughtered in their hundreds in Tewkesbury Park and the Bloody Meadow, or drowned in the River Swilgate. Prince Edward too was killed, dashing Lancastrian dynastic dreams. Those who hid in the town or sought safety within the abbey were rounded up and 17 of the most prominent Lancastrians, including the Duke of Somerset, were hastily tried for treason and executed on a scaffold on Church Street.

Margaret fled but was captured and imprisoned in the Tower of London on 21 May 1471, the very same day that her husband Henry VI, already a prisoner there, was murdered. Edward IV would now rule until his death 12 years later, when the second phase of the Wars of the Roses ignited, to end violently at Bosworth Field in 1485 with the accession of Henry Tudor.

“People are always surprised by how quickly everything happened in Tewkesbury,” says Richard Goddard, Chair of Tewkesbury Battlefield Society. “The forces arrived on the Friday and were gone on the Monday, leaving the townsfolk to clear up from the looting.” But Tewkesbury’s place in history became indelible, recalled today with an equine sculpture depicting Victor and Vanquished on the southern approaches to town and a waymarked battlefield trail around key locations you can also join monthly walks led by the Battlefield Society.

Tewkesbury, battle of

Tewkesbury, battle of, 1471. The last and one of the bloodiest battles of the Wars of the Roses. Queen Margaret, still defending the claims of her husband Henry VI, landed at Weymouth the same day that Edward IV defeated Warwick at Barnet. She moved towards Wales and the north-west to collect support, with Edward marching from Windsor to intercept her. Yorkist supporters denied her a crossing of the Severn at Gloucester, obliging her to make for Tewkesbury. Her troops were caught before they could safely cross and forced to give battle on 4 May 1471, facing south. An attack by the duke of Somerset on the right failed and in the subsequent flight Edward, the young Lancastrian prince of Wales, was killed, near the abbey mill. Somerset was executed, Queen Margaret captured, and Henry VI murdered the same month. The slaughter is commemorated in the name Bloody Meadow and the Lancastrian cause never recovered from the disaster.

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Into battle for Tewkesbury (1471): August 1992 - March 1998

In contrast with the short sharp battle to preserve Blore Heath, the battle to preserve the battlefield at Tewkesbury, threatened with destruction by housing development, was a long drawn out struggle.

In 1992 delegates at the Battlefields Trust conference visited the battlefield at Tewkesbury.

In 1993, The Trust arranged for Dr Anthea Jones (author of a definitive history of Tewkesbury) to give a detailed presentation to the Trust's conference at York in 1993 on the historical sources for the location of the battlefield. During the conference, reporter Oliver Gillie visited the battlefield of Tewkesbury and wrote a long article on the history and historical sources of the battle in the Independent (October 26th 1993, page 9), which in turn generated a leader article on the same day on the importance of preserving battlefields.

In 1994 Kelvin van Hasselt was sent up by the Trust to investigate the heritage potential of the battlefield and to assess local interest in preserving the battlefield.As a result good relations were established with Tewkesbury Town Council and local historians who went on to form the Tewkesbury Battlefield Society. The Town Council became corporate members of the Trust.

It was clear however that the Town Council were powerless to preserve the battlefield or develop its heritage potential without the support of the local government tier above, Tewkesbury Borough Council and the Borough Council seemed determined to encourage housing development to take place on the Gastons, the field regarded by the Trust and English Heritage as being at the centre of the fighting.

In August 1995 Peter Marren wrote a detailed report commissioned by the Trust on the battlefield, with detailed field by field data and a reconstruction of the battlefield today.

In 1996, Chris Scott, then Director of Education of the Tower of London was also commissioned by the Trust to give a lecture to brief members of the Tewkesbury Town Council on the history of the battle.

In January 1997, the Trust registered its objections to Tewkesbury Borough Council to the application by Bryant Homes Mercia Ltd to build 51 houses on the Gastons.

At the Battlefields Trust Conference in Swindon in April 1997, Robert Hardy CBE, a founding trustee of the Battlefields Trust, appealed to the Government to save the historic site for the nation in an interview with a team from the Times:
"A battlefield is a very rare commodity, in a way as important as cathedrals. They are charged with remembrances and electricity".
Robert Hardy CBE - Times April 7th 1997, page 4

The Public Inquiry took place in March 1998.

Michael Rayner assembled and co-ordinated the Trust's evidence on the planning issues involved, and was backed up by Peter Marren who gave detailed historical evidence. The Trust worked extremely closely with Dr Andrew Brown, the battlefields inspector for English Heritage.
Sir Jocelyn Stevens, then Chairman of English Heritage, identified the threat as an extremely serious and potentially fatal challenge to the English Heritage Battlefields Register. Just before the inquiry Sir Jocelyn visited Tewkesbury with General Sir Martin Farndale, Charman of the English Heritage Battlefields Panel together with other members of the panel to publicise the threat to Tewkesbury.

Crucial evidence on the international interest in the battlefield was given by the Tewkesbury Battlefield Society (led by Steve Goodchild) who had set up a web site which had received over 3000 hits at the time of the inquiry from all over the world and included messages of strong support for preserving the battlefield. This was the first time the internet had been used to put the case for preserving a battlefield in England.

On March 11th 1998, the decision by the Secretary of State for Environment, Transport & the Regions, John Prescott, was announced: the Secretary of State accepted the recommendation of the public inquiry inspector to refuse the application of Bryant Homes Mercia Ltd to build 51 homes on the Gastons.

The inspector's report was an important precedent in that the inspector gave considerable weight to the English Heritage Battlefields Register as a factor in his final recommendation.

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