Battle of the Boyne

Those of you lucky enough to live in Ireland have a bank holiday today – I hope you’re all having fun. The rest of us workers are very envious!

King William III

King William III

Today’s bank holiday commemorates the Battle of the Boyne. For many years I have edited this in the Dairy Diary but I have never really known much about its history. Time to find out…

This year’s bank holiday will mark the 320th anniversary of King William’s victory in Ireland. Interestingly, it is very important to the history of the British Monarchy (I think we should all be entitled to this bank holiday!)

Because of his old church beliefs, in 1688 powerful establishment figures forced King James to abdicate and invited William to take the throne. King William III was the Protestant head of the Dutch royal house of Orange. When James and his wife Mary landed in England, the royal army defected and James fled to France. James was deterrmind to win back his throne and, with the help of the French King, amassed an army of 25,000 (mainly Irish Catholics and French).

He landed in Ireland and fought against King William. William’s 36,000-strong army conisted of protestants from several European countries and both kings led their armies in person. It was a bloody battle at Oldcastle, near the mouth of the river Boyne, which saw a victory for William and it glued William and Mary firmly on the throne. It consolidated the momentous changes in the British way of government known as the Glorious Revolution.

Today’s fabulous Blueberry Crumble recipe comes from Just One Pot, Dairy Cookbook – still available for just £2.99 – and makes the most of this seaon’s delicious blueberries.

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