On November 18th 1745, Prince Charles Edward Stuart rode into Carlisle on a white charger to the sounds of a hundred Highland Pipes and the ringing of church bells, after his father was proclaimed King of England at the Market Cross.
To mark the anniversary of this momentous event in the long history of the Border City, Michael Nevin, current Chair of the 1745 Association SCIO is conducting a walking tour that seeks to solve three enduring mysteries about that time:
Firstly, why did this walled city, protected by a Castle to the north and a Citadel to the south, which had held out for nine months against the disciplined, well-armed professional troops of Oliver Cromwell’s New Model Army a hundred years earlier, capitulate within a matter of days to Bonnie Prince Charlie’s rag-tag Jacobites?
Secondly, given that Carlisle had fallen so quickly during their advance, why did the Jacobites try and hold it during their retreat a month later, leaving a garrison in the Castle when the main body of the Jacobite Army went back to Scotland?
And finally, what was the true fate of the Jacobites trapped in Carlisle Castle after they surrendered on December 30th 1745?
Starting at the entrance of the Tullie House Museum (pictured), Mike will endeavour to unravel these mysteries during the course of a 90 minute walk through the ancient city, stopping at the following key landmarks to go through the timeline of those turbulent weeks:
- Tullie House, from where the nervous citizens of Carlisle first saw an advance guard of Jacobite hussars appear on the Stanwix Ban across the River Eden on Tuesday November 9th 1745.
- The Irish Gate and the Western Wall, attacked by the Duke of Atholl’s men on November 10th.
- The Scotch Gate and the Eastern Wall, approached by the Duke of Perth’s men on November 13th / 14th 1745.
- The Guildhall, where the Town Council decided to surrender on November 15th, and the Market Cross, where James Francis Edward Stuart was proclaimed King on Thursday, November 18th.
- The Citadel and English Gate, through which Prince Charles and his Highlanders departed on Sunday, November 21st to continue their advance southwards, returning the same way during their retreat a month later.
- Carlisle Cathedral, where Jacobite prisoners were held following their surrender on December 30th 1745 on the assurance “that they shall not be put to the sword, but be reserved for the King’s pleasure”.
- St Cuthberts Church, where are interred the last mortal remains of many Jacobites executed in 1746 for their part in the Rising.
The tour will end at Tullie House across the road from Carlisle Castle where a condemned Jacobite composed perhaps the most enduring song of the ’45, ‘The Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond’.
About The Guide: Michael Nevin. After graduating with a First Class Honours degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from the University of Oxford, Mike embarked on a varied international career which began with the Ministry of Finance of the Government of St Lucia during the period leading up to the island’s independence, and has included work with the European Investment Bank in Luxembourg, the London Docklands Development Corporation, Deloitte & Touche in the City, NATO’s Central Europe Operating Agency, the Scottish Office and most recently the African Investment Forum. Mike has served as Chair of The 1745 Association since 2016 and is author of ‘Reminiscences of a Jacobite.’