Following the death of Edward IV news was sent to Ludlow, where the Prince of Wales was residing. Upon receiving the news arrangements were made for ‘repair to London’ of Edward V. This would enable his coronation which was already planned for early May. From London a large escort force was dispatched to accompany the child king. It’s size, 2000 men, prompted senior nobles to question the motives of the Woodville Family.
Edward V travels from Ludlow to London for his coronation
For while the councillors of the king, now deceased, were present with the queen at Westminster, and were naming a certain day, on which the eldest son of king Edward, (who at this time was in Wales), should repair to London for the ceremonial of his coronation, there were various contentions among some of them, what number of men should be deemed a sufficient escort for a prince of such tender years, to accompany him upon his journey. Some were for limiting a greater, some a smaller number, while others again, leaving it to the inclination of him who was above all laws, would have it to consist of whatever number his faithful subjects should think fit to summon. Still, the ground of these differences was the same in each case; it being the most ardent desire of all who were present, that this prince should succeed his father in all his glory. The more prudent members of the council, however, were of opinion that the guardianship of so youthful a person, until he should reach the years of maturity, ought to be utterly forbidden to his uncles and brothers by the mother’s side.
This, however, they were of opinion, could not be so easily brought about, if it should be allowed those of the queen’s relatives who held the chief places about the prince, to bring him up for the solemnization of the coronation, without an escort of a moderate number of horse. The advice of the lord Hastings, the Captain of Calais, at last prevailed; who declared that he himself would fly thither with all speed, rather than await the arrival of the new king, if he did not come attended by a moderate escort. For he was afraid lest, if the supreme power should fall into signal vengeance for the injuries which had been formerly inflicted on them by that same lord; in consequence of which, there had long existed extreme ill-will between the said lord Hastings and them. The queen most beneficently tried to extinguish every spark of murmuring and disturbance, and wrote to her son, requesting him, on his road to London not to exceed an escort of two thousand men. The same number was also approved of by the before-named lord; for, as it would appear, he felt fully assured that the dukes of Gloucester and Buckingham, in whom he placed the greatest confidence, would not bring a smaller number with them.
(3rd Continuation of the Croyland Chronicle)
Edward V portrayed in the stained glass window of St Matthew’s Church, Coldridge. Exeter Diocese Blog.
Ludlow Castle. Forms part of: Views of the British Isles, in the Photochrom print collection.; More information about the Photochrom Print Collection is available at http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/pp.pgz; Title from the Detroit Publishing Co., Catalogue J-foreign section, Detroit, Mich. : Detroit Publishing Company, 1905.; Print no. “11035”. Public Domain, via Wikimedia.