This is perhaps not one of the best known battles. It took place on 15th October 1645 at about the midpoint of the Civil War. It took place 15 months after the defeat of the Royalists at Marston Moor.
Sherburn was, at this date, the base for about 1,000 Parliamentarian infantry. A detachment of the Royalist army was attempting to reach Scotland and were moving through Yorkshire, being pursued by a Parliamentarian army. The Royalists took the opportunity to ambush the Sherburn based infantry.
What ensued was considerable confusion. The Royalists took many of the Parliamentarian infantry as prisoners. Preparing for the approaching Parliamentarian army, they saw men fleeing and believed, incorrectly, that they were their own men rather than Parliamentarians, and they panicked. As a result three to four hundred Royalists were taken prisoner, the remainder fleeing to Skipton Castle.
The situation worsened when the Royalist commander’s coach was captured and this contained what was described as “compromising correspondence” from the Secretary of State.