Religious leaders created the political situation afflicting Scotland.
"The Covenanter ministers were causing a lot of trouble. It was the ministers who provided the funds which paid for the army. This meant the
ministers had power over David Leslie’s troops. The plan had been that Leslie’s army were to attack Cromwell’s men on the 1st of September,
while the English were practically defenceless, but the Covenanters would not allow them to do this simply because it was a Sunday. Many believe that
had Leslie been given permission to launch an offensive on the 1st, then the outcome of the battle would have been a lot different."
"The English were in a very desperate situation. Many of the men were close to death, moral was low and it looked like defeat was imminent.
Especially as the Scottish army now had 14,000 men, sitting in the superior position. History shows a very different outcome, the next 24 hours saw
the fate of the doomed English receive the miracle that not only saved their lives but probably dictated the future events that shaped Scotland’s
David Leslie wanted to wait with his men positioned on top of the hill, and force Cromwell into the situation where they needed to either attack a
stronger army up-hill, or stay put and starve to death. Unfortunately for Leslie, the rather foolish and overconfident Covenanter ministers were
impatient and demanded that Leslie moved his men down Doon Hill, and prepare for battle. At 4 pm on the 2nd of September, Leslie repositioned his
troops at the foot of Doon Hill. Upon seeing this Cromwell could not believe his luck, and quickly thought of a strategy to turn the tables on the
Scots. Under the cover of darkness Cromwell repositioned a large proportion of his troops to face the Scottish right flank, waiting to attack just
before sunrise. On the 3rd of September English forces launched a surprise attack on the left, and centre flanks of the Scottish troops. They were
held by the greater numbers of the Scots; however the English on the right managed to power their way through the Scottish flank and cause significant
damage. Seeing this carnage thousands of the Scottish troops fled the battlefield and the battle was effectively over."
"With the captured soldiers, Cromwell simply could not cope with 10,000 men, so around half were let go because they were either too ill or too
injured from the battle, and he really had no use for them. At dawn on the 4th of September the 5,000 soldiers considered too dangerous for release
were force-marched south to Durham, an eight day, 118 mile journey under the control of Sir Arthur Haselrigge, which was to become known as the
‘Durham Death March’."
On the 11th of September the Scottish prisoners were locked in Durham Cathedral. Does that date have any significance?
"With next to no food, water, or heat it is said that the Scots were dying at an average of 30-a-day, though with some days the figure was around
100. By the 31st of October of the 5,000 that had started the “death march” to Durham, over 3,500 died due to the disgusting and unimaginable way
that they were treated. For the 1,600 that died in Durham Cathedral none were treated any better by the English in death than they had been in life.
All were thrown into a mass grave, buried without coffins, without a Christian service, and without any form of marker to acknowledge their presence.
Of those who survived 900 were sold as slaves and sent off to the colonies in the New World, primarily to Virginia, Massachusetts, or Barbados, whilst
the remaining 500 were sent off the following spring to fight in the French army.
The mass grave for the Scottish soldiers was not discovered for nearly 300 years when, in 1946, workmen installing the cathedral with a new heating
system came across the bodies."
I lived in Durham as a child. I remember running my hands over the damaged Neville effigies and asking what had happened. I was told the damage was
caused by a dozen cattle raiders locked in overnight. Others I've spoken to have been told the same lie.
It may not be a secret but it is grossly
The exact position of the grave is not clear. Commonly it is said to be directly in front of the main door.
Wikipedia says, "From 1638 to 1651 the Covenanters, led by Archibald Campbell, 1st Marquess of Argyll, had been the dominant party in Scotland,
directing policy both at home and abroad. Their power had been seriously weakened, however, by Cromwell's victory at Dunbar in September 1650 and was
practically destroyed after the Battle of Worcester and the English occupation of Lowland Scotland. Under Cromwell's Commonwealth, Scotland was
forced into a temporary union with England and the General Assembly of the Kirk lost all civil power."
This doesn't add up to me. I suspect a complex conspiracy with strong relevance today.