Home » Dorset » Charmouth » In the King’s footsteps

In the King’s footsteps

Living quite close to Worcester, we often pop into the city for a walk along the river.

Worcester is a city steeped in history, where many battles have been fought.

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Looking towards Diglis Lock from Diglis Bridge last week.

The River Severn was very calm, and flowing at a more normal depth, unlike the video I posted last November in a previous blog post.

About a mile from this very modern bridge is Powick Bridge, a site of one of the major battles of the English Civil War during the 17th century.

We continued over the bridge and headed towards Worcester Cathedral. The cathedral’s tower was chosen by King Charles II to watch over the Battle of Worcester.

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Worcester Cathedral’s Watergate wall has dates recorded on it of the varying flood levels when the Severn has burst its banks. The highest recorded level was in 1770 (the large plaque) followed closely by March 1947.

To the right just above T’s head, is a marker (with greenery growing under it) for July 2007, the highest level in my lifetime.

The river’s normal level is at least 10-15 feet below the footpath he’s standing on.

We walked into the town, and along Friar Street, a very picturesque street full of beautiful timber framed buildings. I wonder what tales those walls could tell.

IMG_4689Having a while to wait before our train home, we called into King Charles House. This ancient building, which is now a pub, is one of Worcester’s most historic buildings.

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I’ve never been too interested in the history of the British Monarchs, but as T, who has a great interest in the English Civil war, launched into a history lesson with the poor barman, I started to find it very interesting.

King Charles House is the building from where King Charles II escaped his enemies after the Battle of Worcester in September 1651. This battle marked the end of the English Civil War, when the Royalists were defeated by Oliver Cromwell’s Parliamentarians.

The King who eventually escaped to France, first headed north towards Shropshire, then, almost doubling back on himself, headed for the south coast.

Below is a map of his route.

For anyone interested, as I’m not going to launch into a history lesson, there is some good information here.

I have often walked Sal and Jasp on the part of The Monarchs Way that passes nearby our home, without knowing the full reason for its name, but the cogs of my brain where slowly putting two and two together.

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So today, we decided we’d would walk in a few more of Charles II’s footsteps.

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Is this really the route he took?

If it is, according to the above map, On September 10th 1651, he would have been heading towards where I am standing on his way south.

After doing a spot of research for this post, it appears we’ve trodden in his footsteps quite recently too.

When he reached the south coast, Charmouth was another place he passed on his escape route.

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I doubt he’d have had time to look for fossils though πŸ˜‰

** I have added quite a few links to this post. Because of all the history involved, I felt it would make for heavy reading and may be off putting, but for anyone with an interest, they are quite informative.**

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15 thoughts on “In the King’s footsteps

  1. I checked out some of the link (surprise), I’ll check out more later ie I am about to fall asleep.

    Ironically, this post made me think of nostalgia as it epitomises everything English. City, heritage, countryside and coast. And history. A neatly put together post V.

    • I did suspect you’d do a bit of the in depth reading πŸ˜‰ as I know you’re very interested in history. It was quite an eerie feeling when I started to think more deeply about following his footsteps.

      • It was a great post Vicky, and from the comments you’ve received, looks like I’m not the only one who thought so. Good contrast in photos too. If you do decide to go into the request market, always happy to provide back-uo research on the history front πŸ˜‰

  2. Could you do Hereford please? It is where I grew up. I have not been there since January 2000 for my mother’s funeral. Lots of history, a wonderful cathedral (is it Three Choirs Festival time yet?) and some gorgeous rural scenery starts on the outskirts.

    • I did do a short post on Hereford just after I started blogging Hurry to Hereford
      It wasn’t quite as I depth as this one, but there are a few photos of places you must know.
      Yes, there is some beautiful countryside around here.

  3. I’m not surprised you got a request from Andrew to “do” his childhood place. Perhaps you could make a lot of expats very happy and “do” their places. I like the history, but not too much detail, just the feel and the option to delve further. I really like the pic of Charles II’s walk. You’ve had quite the royal treatment recently. Has T taken to calling you Ma’am yet?

    • Thank you ED πŸ™‚ I have only ever skimmed over history, but this got more and more interesting, the deeper I looked into it. I don’t think I’ll be taking requests for history lessons though πŸ˜‰ Ha ha, T does say I’m like the Queen, but because I often go out without any money on me πŸ™‚

  4. Excellent post with lovely pictures. Interesting wiki article on the Kings escape route too, I had not been aware of those details – fascinating. I wish we had studied more of this proper history when we were at school but I seem to recall lots of lessons on the iron and bronze ages and then a big jump to modern history with virtually nothing in between. I feel robbed! πŸ™‚ I’ve since learnt a fair bit about our history from a maritime perspective due to my interest in historical warships but I’m severely lacking in knowledge of the civil war period and land battles. I don’t believe I’ve ever been to Worcester, it is now on my ‘places to visit’ list πŸ™‚

    • Thank you πŸ™‚
      I found history very boring at school, so never took much notice. I may have been taught about it, but living in Yorkshire at the time, I had little interest.
      Though I don’t even remember anything on the War of the Roses either.
      I found you comment in my spam folder after reading your blog post, though it is the only one from a regular reader.
      Sounds like WP have problems somewhere.

      • Thanks for un-spamming me πŸ™‚

        My wife and I have had loads of our comments go into peoples spam folders and looking at the forums we aren’t the only ones.

        I remember one whole term of history lessons that were devoted to an ;’investigation’ of a bog man, the remains of a body found in a peat bog. It was so boring that by the end of the term nobody was remotely interested in ever having to study the same again – hardly great way of getting kids interested in these things! I think it was the teacher to blame to be honest, the whole class had to sit in silence while reading reams upon reams of ‘simulated’ police and crime evidence. In comparison our geography lessons were amazing and we had field trips all over the place to show us how the subjects we were learning about related to actual life, from rock formations to river flows. We used to go out on field trips armed with various things to measure river flows, currents, wind erosion etc. It was fantastic! πŸ™‚

        • I think you’re right about boring/exciting teachers. Apart from art and craft which I loved anyway. I did far better in the subjects of the teachers I liked. I also enjoyed geography. I can still sing the ‘Swale, Ure, Nidd, Wharfe, Aire, Calder, Don’ song my geography teacher taught us πŸ˜€ The ‘bog man’ is something I think I’d have found interesting, but who knows with a crap teacher.

  5. I havent been around here for years,, but my mother used to have friends in Malvern, and we visited regularly, and I was always stunned by the countryside, beautiful pictures and words,, πŸ˜‰

    • Malvern? Wow, I’ve spent many a happy time there walking my dogs. The very first post I did in January 2012 was about Malvern, and another in February too. I love the hills around here.

    • It is a lovely city and I never realised how steeped in history it is.
      I guess if we were to delve into the past of many towns and cities we’d have our eyes opened to the history surrounding them.

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