Sir Allen Apsley's Regiment of Foot

Flag Illustration 11)
CountryEngland
AllegianceRoyalist
ConflictsFirst Civil War
TypeFoot
ColonelsSir Allen Apsley
Sir Edward Hopton
Area RaisedDevon
Coat ColourRed2)
Flag ColourBlack and white3)
Flag DesignGyronny
Field ArmiesHopton 1643-4
Oxford 1644-5
Goring 1645-6

Also Sir Edward Hopton's Regiment of Foot

Royalist infantry regiment that served in the West Country and with the King's Oxford Army throughout the First Civil War.

Service History

1643

  • Raised in Devon
  • October: Siege of Wardour Castle
  • November: Garrison of Winchester

1644

  • January: Taking of Axminster
  • March: In garrison at Malmesbury
  • March: Battle of Cheriton
  • April-June: Siege of Lyme (detachment under Apsley?)
  • June: Battle of Cropredy Bridge
  • August: Battle of Lostwithiel
  • August: Relief of Appledore? (detachment under Apsley?)
  • October: Second Battle of Newbury

1645

  • January: In garrison at Cirencester (Hopton)
  • Siege of Plymouth?
  • April to May: Siege of Taunton?
  • May to June: Siege of Taunton?
  • May: Storm of Leicester (Hopton)
  • June: Battle of Naseby (Hopton) - Hopton's part of the regiment destroyed
  • July: Battle of Langport
  • Garrison of Barnstaple

1646

  • February: Relief of Dunster Castle?
  • April: Disbanded at surrender of Barnstaple

Notes

Apsley received his Colonels Commission around 9th February 1643 according to a previous Captain Robert Clarke, who received his Commission at the same date. However there is a dated Commission for a Regiment of 1200 Foot 10th December 1642 at Oxford by Charles 1 currently held at the Leeds University Library and formerly on loan to the British Museum.

The regiment served with Lord Hopton's army in the Cheriton campaign, likely commanded by Lt Col Edward Hopton when Apsley was absent in Exeter. Subsequently they were members of Astley's brigade of the Oxford Army during the campaign of 1644. Meanwhile it appears that some of the regiment remained with Apsley in the West Country. During 1644 Sir Edward Hopton was promoted to colonel of the Oxford Army unit, leding them at Leicester and Naseby, where the regiment was captured and disbanded, along with the majority of the Oxford Army foot.

The West Country detachment were part of Lord Goring's forces in 1645, with an ensign Morley being captured at Langport. They then served in the garrison of Barnstaple, that surrendered to Sir Thomas Fairfax and the New Model Army on 19th April 1646.

Coats and Flags

Richard Symonds4) noted that Apsley's wore red coats and carried six colours at Aldbourne Chase on 10th April 1644. The six colours were plain black, black with a St George canton, black with a St George canton and a pile wavy (of uncertain colour, red or white have been proposed), gyronny with two black and two white segments with a St George canton, gyronny with three black and three white segments with a St George canton and gyronny with four black and four white segments with a St George canton. The colours are illustrated by Peachey & Prince 5). The Oxford Army foot received a clothing issue in September 1644 but no details of coat colours are known or even if uniformity was achieved within regiments.6)

Notable Officers

A list of the regiment's officers is shown in Officers and Regiments of the Royalist Army by Stuart Reid (Partizan Press).

Colonel Sir Allen Apsley

Sir Allen Apsley (1616-1683) (also spelt Allan or Alan) was born in London and had two brothers and a sister. His sister Lucy married John Hutchinson, who became Parliamentarian governor of Nottingham in the Civil Wars, and her diary is a major source for the period. Apsley served in Goring's Regiment during the First Bishop's War of 1639. He was knighted in 1642 and commissioned to raise a troop of horse in the West Country, serving as a captain in John, Lord Byron's Regiment of Horse in 1642. Somewhat oddly he was also appointed Governor of Exeter, despite the city being under Parliamentary control until September 1643. During 1643 he raised his foot regiment and a small regiment of horse. In late 1645 he was appointed governor of Barnstaple, surrendering to Sir Thomas Fairfax and the New Model Army on 19th April 1646.7)

Colonel Sir Edward Hopton

Sir Edward Hopton was from Canon Frome in Herefordshire. When Apsley returned to the West Country, Hopton was given command of the regiment in the Oxford Army.

Major Rowland St Leger

Major St Leger had been a Captain in the army of 1640. He also served as Major in Sir Allen Apsley's Regiment of Horse.

Officer Lists

From original research by Victor Judge aka BCW user 1642

Officers under Apsley

  • Colonel Sir Alan Apsley
  • Lieutenant Colonel James Apsley
  • Captain James Aston
  • Captain Arthur Arscott
  • Captain Chester
  • Captain Robert Clarke
  • Captain Thomas Dennys
  • Captain John Hambden
  • Captain Thomas Ivatt
  • Captain Manarich
  • Captain Francis Morley
  • Captain Richard Noke/s
  • Captain Hugh O’Neale
  • Captain Rice Phillips
  • Captain Richard Richards
  • Captain Roger Rowcliffe
  • Captain William Say
  • Captain George Sheeres
  • Captain Henry Southcott
  • Captain Thomas Walker
  • Captain Lieutenant William Hobbs (I.O. Somerset)
  • Lieutenant Arthur Chetmell
  • Lieutenant Thomas Foster
  • Lieutenant Gilbert Meager
  • Lieutenant Edward Poyntz
  • Ensign Morley
  • Ensign Phillip Shapcott
  • Ensign John Stukely
  • Quartermaster Thomas Langford

Officers under Hopton

  • Colonel Edward Hopton
  • Lieutenant Colonel Robert Clarke
  • Sargeant Major Robert Clarke
  • Captain Michael Hearst
  • Captain Walker
  • Captain Lieutenant Christopher Whitton
  • Lieutenant Gilbert Kneebone
  • Lieutenant John Rees
  • Quartermaster Arthur Greene

Contemporary References

Apsley Lt Governor of Exeter

Harl. Mss. 6804 f.15 Commission from Charles 1 appointing Co. Alan Apsley Lieutenant Governor of Exeter under Sir John Berkeley. Undated

Andrews' Petition

The humble petition of John Andrews of St. Thomas the Apostle moste humbly sheweth Right worshipfull Sirs your moste poore and humble petitioner hath once before now been with your worships about this same and your worships ordered your poore petitioner to come some other time. Worshipful sirs I have thought fitt to your worship a full account of everything: Sirs when Mr Benjamin Goff and Mr Hoopere were Constables of this parish they pressed me for our gratious Majesties service King Charles the first of moste blessed memory and your petitioner then became a soldier under the command of Lieutenant Collonell Appsley neer two full years: in which time your petitioner was in many fights: to laie sidge against the Towne of Taunton where your petitioner was grievously wounded; your petitioner being unfitt for service was sent home to the hospittall in St Thomas parish being then kept at the work house

Sutter's Petition

Extract. The humble petition of Thomas Sutter of Drewsteignton served as a foot soldier under Col. Piper and afterwards under Sir Alan Apsley in the Company of Captain Hobbs. He was at the siege of Plymouth, Reading, Exeter and Dartmouth and in Cornwall and in the garrison at Barnstaple.

Fisher's Petition

The humble petition of John Fisher of Molland sheweth that your petitioner in the beginning of the late unhappie and unnaturall warres in this Kingdom became a souldier in the Regiment of Colonell Apslie and under the command of Captain Arthur Arscott who is dead.

Gerd's Petition

Petition of Issrael Gerd of Crediton served under Captain Arscott in the regiment of Sir Alan Apsley and was wounded at the siege of Lyme Regis.

Tree's Petition

The humble petition of John Tree of Sidbury in the said County Most humbly sheweth that your poor petitioner was a soldyer severall yeares together for his Majestie King Charles the first of ever blessed memory under the command of Captaine Manarich served in the Company of Captain Manarish of Colonell Absleys Regiment and beinge in the siege att Lyme Regis: your petitioner was maimed in Axminster in the said County

1st January 1672

Ensign Shapcott's Certificate

To the right worshipfull his Majesties justices of Peace for the County of Devon These are to certifie that Phillip Shapcott of Samford Peverrall in ye Countie of Devon formerlie served his Majestie of Blessed Memory Charles ye first in all this unhappie warrs here in England; under ye command of Maior Humphrey Sydenham, as well as alsoe Ensigne under ye command of Captaine Henrie Southcott and was faithfull in ye said service; never knowne too waver in ye least, but continued faithfull too ye end but nowe, by linge in ye colde in ye said service and other ill disaster which happened unto him, one ye same accompt, is not able to gett a sufficient maintaineance, but by reason of ye aforesaid impediments which he tooke in ye sayd service remains a verie poore man and is at this present trulie indigent and an object of charatie, Arthur Sanders Robert White Minister Rich. Locke Thomas Kelland and others.

Captain Noke's Petition

Petition of Richard Noke Served in Sir Thomas Byrons Troop of Horse then Captain of Foot in the Regiment of Sir Alan Apsley.

Philp to Sir Edward Walker

For Sir Edward Walker Esq Sect. to the Council of Warr at Mr Cripps house Oxford There is a gentleman in this garrison, Lieutenant Collonell Robert Clarke who hath lost his severall Commissions, haveing been three times taken prisoner. I have known him since the beginning of these warrs and therefore am able to certify what his commands have been, he desires to render his Commissions. The first is a Commission for Captaine in the Regiment of Coll: Allen Apsley which is to beare date with the Colonells Commission which was granted about a weeke after Candlemas, will now be two yeares. The second is a Commission for Segeant Major to Coll: Edward Hoptons Regiment that was Coll: Apsleys, for which he had a Commission from my Lord Hopton dated at Newberry the 21 of Aprill 1644. The last is a Commission for Lieutenant Collonell to Edward Hoptons which is to beare date 21. of September 1644 which place he here executes. His desire is to have these Commisions rendred; he hath sent by the bearer three poundes, the rest I will see paid the first money he receives which I hope will be ere long: for which favour you shall much oblidge tour very loving brother

Philip Walker Cirencester this 27 of Jan. 1644(5)

for I sent a letter to you yesterday in the behalfe of my officers and myselfe which I desire your satisfaction in and answeare with all speede in which you will oblidge, soe I rest your loving brother

Philip Walker

Information on Say

Wiltshire. Information of Thomas Stephens that William Say of Ashton Canes in Wilts. did beare armes against the Parliament in Oxford and in Farrington in Taunton Deane about ye tyme ye Earle of Essex was in ye West with his Army, he being under Colonel Apsley and Captain Clarke.

Trained Band Company

29 die Januarii 1644[45] Memorandum. That the day and yeare abovesaid Mr Maior the Aldermen and Common Counsel of the Town were commanded and required by Sir Allen Apsley to assemble themselves together and to make choice of one amongst themselves to be Captaine of the Trayned Band of the Town and for the Town of Barnstaple whoe thereupon being met together certaine men of the Comon Counsell of the Towne were ppounded to stand upon the eleccon (viz) Mr Lewis Palmer, Mr John Downe, Mr Thomas Dennys and Mr Nicholas Cook and the eleccion being made by Balls, after the manner of the ellecon of the Maior of the said Towne, the lott fell upon Mr Thomas Dennys whoe then and there was chosen to be Captaine and so stands elected and chosen Captaine.

Captain Richards

Property dispute relating to a tenancy which mentions the following…Captaine Richard Richards being then in actuall service against the Parliament. Reputed to be lord of the Manor of Gorewellacomb.

Pay while at Malmesbury

To Will. Fisher & Mr. Jo: Pleydell Receivers of the contribution of the Division of Marlborough, Chippenham & the Devizes. Our Will and Pleasure that out of the contribution of the Division of Marlborough, Chippenham & the Devizes you pay unto Col. Tho: Howard the full sum of £31 by him disburst to Col. Alan Apsley to pay his Regiment in Garrison at Malmesbury and for your soe doinge this shalbe your warrant 16.3.1643(4)

Apsley to South Molton Constable

To the High Constable of the Hundred of South Moulton Whereas I have received expresse order and command from his Highness Prince Charles, for the leavying and collecting of the weekly rates of your Hundred of South Moulton, which I am to imploy for the buying and making of provisions for the use and supply of his Highness his Army, and have straight charge given me from his Highness to effect this with all speed I can; I do hereby therefore require you forthwith to issue forth your Warrants to all the petty Constables of your Hundred straightly charging them that thay faile not to collect and bring three weeks contribution of their severall Parishes in money or wheat, which they are to pay and deliver to William Gouldesborough at the Fort of Barnstaple, by Munday next at the furthest, and if any of your Parishes shall faile in the payment and full performance hereof by the time appointed, they must expect to have a party of my Lord Gorings Horse sent to them for the bringing in of the same. Given under my hand at Barnstaple this 8. February 1646

Allen Apsley

Richard Head's Petition

Petition of Richard Head of Easton under Captain Michael Hearst in the Regiment of Foot of Colonel Edward Hopton, at siege of Plymouth received a shot in the throat through ye right side shoulder. A1.110.119 Certified by Capt. John Parsons, Captain of horse in Lord Hoptons Regiment.

Gloucester Archives

Letters in Gloucester Archives dated

  • 5.6.44 to repayre to Godstow House and Wolvercott
  • 6.6.1644 Letter to Col. Hopton saying that Sgnt. Major Pinchbeck has been appointed to march tomorrow with Officers and souldiers of Lord Hoptons and Sir John Pawletts to Abingdon.
  • 12.6.1644 The Governor of Godstow House and Wolvercott to forbear issueing of warrants.
  • 17.6.1644 Order to Col. Hopton to march immediately to Witney.
  • 25.4.1645 Richard Hopton to his Sonne Sir Edward
  • 18.5.1645 Letter from Thomas Fairfax permitting Sir Edward Hopton to stay in Leicester till his wound bee cured.

2 more.

Ordnance from Godstow House

WO55.1661.56 17 die June 1644 Received into his Majesties stores from Godstowe House

  • Brasse Ordnance mounted vizt. } 3 Peeces
  • Round shott of Iron for } 3 Peeces 30
  • Cases of wood for } 3 Peeces 25

Strength

  • 300 in September 16438)
  • 300 sent to Winchester (as well as 300 foot from unregimented companies) 9)
  • At least 6 companies at Cheriton
  • Estimated 500 at Naseby

See Also

http://www.17thcenturylifeandtimes.com/index.html Website that used to include Sir Allen Apsley's Regiment re-enactment group and a detailed regimental history.

1) Flag images by kind permission of Wargames Designs
2) , 3) Officers and Regiments of the Royalist Army, Stuart Reid, 1988 (2nd Impression). Partizan Press. ISBN 0 946525 12 9
4) Symonds' diary is online at http://www.molyneuxs.com/49301/index.html
5) , 6) ECW Flags and Colours 1: English Foot, Stuart Peachey & Les Prince 1990, Partizan Press ISBN:0946525846
8) , 9) Cheriton 1644 The Campaign & the Battle, John Adair, 1973, The Roundway Press, Kineton.