>> Thursday, 22 October 2009
1073 A.D. An Anglo Norman force, with some local Saxon Fyrd is defending a river against a Viking raiding force. The terrain is dominated by a watchtower which overlooks a ruined village destroyed in the northern revolt.
The Normans took the left, facing a lightly armed raider force. The Fyrd took the right against the Viking main force. Light archers lead both armies.
The Vikings split their forces, the archers moved to engage the Fyrd archers defending the riverbank. The Norman archers fell back to the watchtower (screened by a party of Monks!) as they were being outflanked on their left by fierce Vikings!
In front of the watchtower, the battle fizzled out as neither side really attempted to engage. The Vikings were worried they would be ambushed and the Saxons did not feel strong enough to attack!
The Fyrd archers, however, held wonderfully well, causing much damage before breaking in the face of Viking swordsmen crossing the River.
The Viking raiders on their right flank pushed to try and outflank the Normans.
Fortunately, the Normans had left an ambush of axemen on that flank in a clump of trees who rushed out to stem the Viking advance. The rest of the Normans, seeing this, went to support them, and forded the river.
The Viking raiders were attempting to take an important hill on the Normans flank but were surprised by the Norman axemen. The Vikings were driven from the hill before they re-established their line, this put the axemen in danger of being surrounded by the greater number of Viking raiders.
At this point, the Norman knights came charging over the hill followed by their spearmen. The knights smashed through the Viking front line, but caused little damage, and soon were fighting for their lives in the middle of a swarm of raiders. Two knights were subsequently lost before the Norman spearmen joined the battle and began to win the engagement.
At this point, the Vikings, having taken many more casualties than the Anglo-Normans decided to pull off while they had sufficient strength to resist any pursuit. The loss of 2 Norman knights cannot have upset the Fyrd unduly!!! - though the Normans would have been mortified.