England responds

Surrey waits for news

The Earl of Surrey, appointed to defend the north from the Scots, took up residence during the summer at Pontefract Castle. On 24th August, three days after the Scots crossed the border, he received news of the invasion. Surrey immediately ordered a muster of English forces at Bolton, a small village west of Alnwick, no later than 5th September. He also arranged to meet his son, Thomas Howard, the Lord Admiral, with the English Fleet in Newcastle on 1st or 2nd September. He ordered food and other supplies to be stockpiled in Newcastle and Berwick.

Surrey advances (24th August to 5th September 1513)

Surrey left Pontefract and headed for York to collect a purse of £14,000 with which to pay his army. He continued north to Durham Cathedral (where he collected the Banner of St Cuthbert). No English army that had marched to Scotland with this banner had ever lost a battle. He then arrived in Newcastle on 1st September and was forced to await the arrival of his son, the Lord Admiral, aboard the Fleet Flagship, the Mary Rose. A storm in the North Sea delayed the fleet until the 2nd.

From Newcastle, Surrey, his son the Lord Admiral and over 900 sailors from the fleet marched north, first to Alnwick and then to the muster at Bolton. From here, Surrey wrote to James IV asking him to wait for the English to advance north and challenging him to fight a battle no later than 9th September. James accepted, as it was his intention to fight.