The Armies & the Losses

Based on the RS account and Colonel John Birch’s letter to the Speaker of the House of Commons from Evesham dated 16 March 1646 (MS Tanner 60 f.560r in the Bodleian Library), the parliamentarian army was formed of eight hundred cavalry and 200 firelock dragoons under Sir William Brereton, 600 horse and foot from Hereford, under Colonel John Birch, 700 horse and foot from Gloucester, under Colonel Thomas Morgan, and 100 horse and 200 foot from Evesham, under Colonel Edward Rous.

Once formed up for battle, Brereton’s force occupied the right wing of the deployment with the firelocks probably interlined between his cavalry troops or squadrons. Morgan commanded the centre with perhaps 1,100 infantry and Birch the parliamentarian left with around 500 horse. 

In the accounts of the battle, the strength of the royalist army is generally identified at between 2,000–3,000.  Sir Edward Walker, the only royalist providing an account of the battle, suggests the lower figure, whilst A Perfect diurnal of some passages in parliament indicated the royalist army was 3,000 strong. Birch’s account in the memoirs dictated to his secretary also suggests the royalists had ‘around 3,000 men’, but his 16 March letter from Evesham said the parliamentarians believed the royalists had 2,500 horse and foot.

Royalist losses were 1,700 captured and 200 killed with some of the cavalry (Walker claimed ‘most’) escaping to Oxford. On this basis the royalists may have had 2,300–2,500 men (excluding officers) at Stow.  One of the royalist officers killed was Captain Hastings Keyt, whose funerary memorial can be seen in St Edward’s church in Stow.

Parliamentarian losses are not recorded, but are likely to be few.     


Explore the Battlefields Hub

Battlefields Trust NewsBattlefields Trust EventsJoin the Battlefields TrustDonate to The Battlefields Trust