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Only Fighting in the Glorious Revolution 

The Battle of Broad Street, Reading -  Nash Ford Publishing


  • Broad Street in Reading was created by the monks of Reading Abbey in the early 13th century. It has been the town's main shopping street ever since.
  • At the top of the street was a stone preaching cross for the grey friars to use.
  • Archbishop Laud's father had a clothier's shop there in Tudor times.
  • During James II's reign, the people wanted to get rid of the King because he was a Catholic. They asked his daughter & her husband, William & Mary, to come over from the Netherlands and rule instead. This was called the Glorious Revolution.
  • There was only one battle fought between the two sides. It took place in Reading in 1688. It was known as the Battle of Broad Street.
  • King James was at Hounslow Heath (near London) with his army. He sent 600 Irishmen to Reading as a 'rear guard'. The people of the town were scared of them and many fled.
  • William was at Hungerford arranging to become King. He was asked to send soldiers to help. He sent 250 Dutchmen.
  • The Irishmen were stationed in the Market Place, Broad Street, in St. Mary's churchyard & at the Bear Inn in Bridge Street, waiting for the Dutch to come along Castle Street.
  • William's troops were warned. So entered the town along the Oxford Road. They surprised the Irish.
  • There was lots of fighting, but the Irish panicked & quickly fled. They lost 50 men.
  • The Dutch won the battle. James II fled the country & William & Mary became King & Queen.


    Nash Ford Publishing 2015. All Rights Reserved.