The Restoration


The officers and men of the Lifeguard of Foot of King Charles I, suffered varying fortunes in the years following the Civil War. Some officers and men did not live to see the Restoration, such as Captain Robert Levinz who was hanged, as a Royalist plotter in 1650. Others were more fortunate, and received some preferment when Charles II regained his throne, being among those who claimed part of the £60,000 granted by King Charles II to his, “Truly – Loyal and Indigent Party,” after his restoration. Among these were:

Montagu Bertie, Earl of Lindsey: Among other honors was made a Knight of the Garter and Colonel of His Majesty’s Regt. of Horse

Sir William Leighton                   : Capt., His Majesty’s Own Regt. of Foot, 1664-65

Charles Fox                        : Capt., Lord Morpeth’s Regt. of Foot, 1678

Sir Henry Wroth                         : Capt., Royal Regt. of Horse, 1661

Sir Edward Brett                         : Capt., His Majesty’s Own Regt. of Horse, 1674

Two Cheshire men, and a widow of another, also claimed pensions as maimed soldiers. One of the soldiers was Sergeant Randle Whittacker of Captain Richard Walthall’s Company, who had served with the Lifeguard from Edgehill (1642) to Stow-on-the-Wold (1646). Another, William Pemberton, served from Edgehill (1642) to Naseby (1645), when he was taken prisoner, and had even fought again at the battle of Worcester (1651), during the Third Civil War.

Perhaps the most battle-scarred of all the veterans of the Lifeguard to survive to see the Restoration, was William Booth of Nantwich, Cheshire, a common soldier, who on January 15th, 1661, petitioned the County Justices for a pension, saying:

“Your poor petitioner hath been a true and faithful soldier for his Majesty of Ever Blessed

memory both in England and Ireland and did continue in his Majesty’s service of two

years, and never received any satisfaction for the same but was wounded and maimed

to his great prejudice, yet never deserted his Majesty’s cause. He was in fights in Ireland,

first at Ross, at Swords, at Finlays, at Mulingar and had his head broke in pieces and

three pieces of his skull taken out, then shot in shoulder, cut in leg, run into the breast with

a pike, then his Majesty was pleased to send for him out of Ireland to be one of his Guard…”

While there is no direct connection as regards actual personnel between King Charles I’s Lifeguard, and the regiment, now the Grenadier Guards, raised by his son, King Charles II, then in exile, in 1656. The lineage certainly extends through the badges that have endured in the Brigade of Guards, and even the redcoats, so it is obvious that the King’s Lifeguard of Foot can trace its history to the present day.


A good deal of detailed information has survived concerning the standards carried by the Lifeguard of Foot. The colours illustrated hereafter are based on descriptions of the colours captured at Naseby, together with details given by Richard Symonds in his ‘Diary’.

A further detailed description is given in Thomason Tracts E. 288(45), as follows:

“Six Standards of Foot Colours of the Foot Guard, all which have the every

of them a red Crosse in a white silver field [St. George’s Canton], next unto

the Pole, and are severally distinguished thus, the Colours are all red.

1. The King’s Standard with a goulden lyon, and over the Lyon a goulden Crown,

and over the Lyon and under the crown this motto, DIEU ET MON DROIT.

2. The Queen’s Standard; with Dragon and Crown, both in gold.

3. A Percullis and a crown, both in gould.

4. A Rose and Crown, the crown gould, the Rose white silver in the middle,

and the outward leaves shadowed with silver (Shown as gold in Turmile.)

5. Six colours of the Standards of the Foot Guard, with every of them three Roses apiece,

in the same manner that the Single Rose is described. All of those six Colours of the

Foot Guard, the Colours are Red, and have every of them a red Crosse in a white silver

Field next the pole.”

The St. George’s Canton takes up the entire left-most third of the flag. The crown is shown with white silver pearls atop it, and different colored jewels in the gold. Gold bullion tassels and cords of two-feet in length adorned each colour, with a gold spear point atop the pole.

Of the other sets shown, Turmile’s manuscript may have been drawn many years after the war, and may not be drawn from the original flags. Richard Symonds certainly drew his at the time, but his work was often hasty, done from memory, and not always entirely accurate.

Reconstructed Colours: The reconstructed regiment has two current colours – First and Second Captain’s Company.

The First Captain’s being a single gold crown with white silver pearls, the Tudor rose white silver in the middle and the outward leaves shadowed with silver, all on a red field with the St. George Canton on the whole leftmost third of the field. Gold bullion tassels & cords of 2-feet length. The Second Captains of two crowns and roses.

Full Chronology of the King’s Lifeguard of Foot


July-Sept. Commissioned and raised.

23 Oct.    Battle of Edgehill.

12 Nov.    Storming of Brentford;              Turnham Green.

9 Dec.     Allotted winter quarters in Oxford


1 Feb.    Mustered approx. 500 soldiers strong.

2 Feb.    Storming of Cirencester

(detachment present).                                   .

10 Apr.    Escape of Sir William

Vavasour from Windsor.

11 Apr.    Little Dean (detachment present).

13 Apr.    Ripple Field (detachment present).

23 Apr.     Detachment surprised at Dorchester,


25 Apr.    Action at Caversham Bridge.

10 Aug. –

5 Sept.   Siege of Gloucester.

12 Aug.    Earl of Lindsey, Colonel of

the regiment, arrives at Oxford.

20 Sept.   First Battle of Newbury.

Sept.        The regiment returns to Oxford.

1642 1644

July-Sept. Commissioned and raised.                               13 Feb. Muster in New Parks, Oxford.

23 Oct.    Battle of Edgehill.                                                6 Apr. The Regiment marches from Oxford;

12 Nov.    Storming of Brentford;                                                  approx. 350 soldiers strong.

Turnham Green.                                                    10 Apr. Aldbourn Chase muster; approx. 350 soldiers strong.

9 Dec.     Allotted winter quarters in Oxford                   29 June Battle of Cropredy Bridge.

21 Aug. Battle of Beacon Hill, Lostwithiel.

1643 31 Aug. Battle of Castle Dore, near Fowey.

1 Feb.    Mustered approx. 500 soldiers                           27 Oct. Second Battle of Newbury.

strong.                                                                    Nov.    The regiment returns to Oxford.

2 Feb.    Storming of Cirencester

(detachment present).                                          1645

18 Feb.    Mustered approx. 600                                         9 May  Mustered approx. 200 soldiers strong.

10 Apr.    Escape of Sir William                                          June   Storming of Leicester.

Vavasour from Windsor.                                    14 June Battle of Naseby; approx. 300 soldiers strong.

11 Apr.    Little Dean (detachment present).                    6 Aug. Sir Thomas Glenham’s Regiment of Foot now march

13 Apr.    Ripple Field (detachment present).                          as Lifeguard.

23 Apr.     Detachment surprised at Dorchester,             24 Sept.Battle of Rowton Heath.

Oxfordshire.                                                          5 Nov. The King returns to Oxford.

25 Apr.    Action at Caversham Bridge.

10 Aug. –                                                                                1646

5 Sept.   Siege of Gloucester.                                          24 June Surrender of Oxford.

12 Aug.    Earl of Lindsey, Colonel of

the regiment, arrives at Oxford.

20 Sept.   First Battle of Newbury.

Sept.        The regiment returns to Oxford.

Regimental Officers of the Historical Regiment

(PW = Prisoner of War)

Lord Willoughby d’Eresby, Montague Bertie : (1608?-66); Colonel, PW Edgehill, later Earl of Lindsay.

Lt-Colonel Sir William Leighton                    : From Shropshire; knighted at Hereford in Sept. 1645 and was there when it

fell; described by his contemporaries as a vigilant and faithful commander;

In 1648 he took part in the defense of Colchester during the Second Civil

War; In 1654 he seems to have been serving King Charles II abroad, and in

1656-57 he was in Swedish service; imprisoned in the Tower from May 1658

to Feb. 1659, because of his part in a Royalist plot; his name appears in the

List of Indigent Officers published in 1663, but he was fortunate enough to be

given a command soon thereafter, when on Mar. 17th, 1644, he was

commissioned as a Captain in the King’s Regiment of First Foot Guards

(later Grenadier Guards) under Colonel John Russell (who had commanded

Prince Rupert’s Regt. of Foot), was an appropriate appointment, although he

did not enjoy this command for long, because he retired on Oct. 18th, 1665,

perhaps due to poor health.

Lt-Colonel Sir William Vavasour                  : PW Edgehill, later Baronet, and Colonel of his own horse regiment.

Major Robert Markham                                 : From Sedgebrook, Lincolnshire.

Captain John Beeton                                      : From Berkshire; PW Naseby.

Captain Nicholas Bertie                                 : (1621-71); PW Naseby; son of Sir Peregrine Bertie, Knight Baronet, and first

cousin to his Colonel (their grandfather being the old Earl of Lindsey, died

in 1642).

Captain Thomas Cholmondley                      : From Cheshire; probably left the regiment at the end of 1642.

(of Vale Royal)

Captain Ferdinando (or Payne?) Fisher (Sr?) : PW Naseby; this was probably the Payne Fisher who was father of Oliver

Cromwell’s poet laureate, ‘Paganis Piscator’ (born 1616), having been a Major

of Sir Patricius Curwen’s Regt. of Foot, and when leading 300 of them against

the Royalists at Marston Moor, he was captured and changed sides.

Captain Charles Fox                                     : PW Naseby; was Ensign in Sir William Vavasour’s Regiment of Foot in the

Scot’s War (Second Bishop’s War) of 1640; was Lieutenant of his former

Colonel’s (now Lt-Col. Sir William Vavasour) company in the King’s Lifeguard

of Foot in 1642; succeeded to command of that company when Sir William

Vavasour left the regiment on June 14th, 1643, to form his own regiment of


Captain Robert Johnson                               : In the regiment from 1643-44(?).

Captain Richard (or William) Legge            : Firelock company (11th company) – commanded by Col. William Legge,

but more likely by his brother Richard, who had been his Lieutenant in 1641.

Captain Thomas Leigh                                  : From Cheshire; Ensign in 1640; Probably went home by end of 1643.

Captain Robert Levinz                                  : (1615-50); of Lincoln College, Oxford, married to a daughter of Sir

Peregrine Bertie; PW Naseby; later commissioned to raise troops in England

at the time of Charles II’s Scottish Expedition, but was discovered and

arrested, then court-marshaled as a spy; was offered his life for exchange for

betraying his accomplices, but protested the justice of his cause; he was

hanged over against the Exchange on July 18th, 1650; according to his

contemporaries, he was a man of prudence and integrity.

Captain Thomas Mynne                                : Lieutenant 1640; Capt-Lieutenant 1641.

Captain William Partridge                             :

Captain Sir Henry Radly                                : From Yarborough, Lincolnshire; PW Edgehill; Left late 1644, probably for a

cavalry command.

Captain Stacy                                                 :

Captain Charles Stevenson                             :

Captain Charles Stuart                                    :

Captain Richard Walthall                               : From Cheshire; Left the regiment early 1643 to become Capt. of Lord

Cholmondeley’s Horse.

Captain Walters                                              :

Captain John Windeband                                : From Oxford

Captain-Lieutenant Stephen Foster                 : From Escrick, Yorkshire

Captain-Lieutenant Waller                              : PW Naseby

Lieutenant Anthony Aubrey                            : Ensign 1640; Killed First Newbury, 1643

Lieutenant Brown                                            : PW Naseby

Lieutenant (Charles?) Cotton                           :

Lieutenant Cranfield                                        :

Lieutenant Richard Edmonds                           :

Lieutenant William Fordred                             : From Gloucester

Lieutenant Godwin                                           : In the regiment 1643

Lieutenant Robert Havercamp                          :

Lieutenant William Hull                                   : Ensign, Lt.-Col. Vavasour’s Company, May 1643

Lieutenant Hugh (Humphrey) Leigh (Legh)    : (Born 1600); Ensign 1640; He was also Sergeant-At-Arms attending the

Great Seal and went to York in 1642; Was in all the battles where King

Charles I was present and served until surrender of Oxford in 1646;

Seriously wounded at Naseby, but left for dead and then somehow got away;

Was still active in 1671 when he asserted that he had held his office for over

50 years under 9 Lord Chamberlains and Lord Keepers.

Lieutenant Peter Mewsey (Mews?)                  : (1619-1706); of St. John’s College, Oxford, wounded nearly 30 times in the

First Civil War, and lived to become Bishop of and of Winchester; Was in

battle again, 40 years after Naseby at Sedgemoor – at a critical moment he

moved some Royalist guns with his own carriage horses after their drivers

had run away – for this brave act King James II rewarded him with a medal.

Lieutenant Thomas Mucklow                          :

Lieutenant William St. John                            : Killed at Cirencester, 1643

Lieutenant Webster                                          :

Ensign John Ball                                              : From Somerset; Capt. Stuart’s Company

Ensign William Berkenhead                            : PW Naseby; Capt. Fox’s Company

Ensign Robert Chamberlane                            : PW Naseby.

Ensign Robert Hubberstay                               : Capt. Johnson’s Company

Ensign Ingoldsby                                             : (Born 1619); PW Naseby; of Pembroke College, Oxford

Ensign Masterman                                           : PW Naseby

Ensign Peter Mowshall                                    : From Warwick; Capt. Levinz’ Company; PW Naseby

Ensign (Philip?) Porter                                    : PW Naseby; likely born 1628 as 3rd son of Endymion Porter (1587-1649),

MP for Droitwich in the Long Parliament, and confidant of King Charles I;

Imprisoned 1654 for his part in a Royalist plot against the Protector,

“otherwise,” writes C.H. Firth, “he is only heard of as a swashbuckler of the

worse type”; this would mean that he was only 14 years old in 1642(!), so

quite possibly did not join the regiment until 16 or 17 years old, as he

was known to be with the regiment at Naseby.

Ensign Wildhall                                                : PW Naseby.

Ensign Wright                                                   :

Quartermaster Benjamin Stone                         : Probably a noted sword maker of the Cutler’s Company, London in the

1630’s; An unscrupulous character who in 1636 was appointed His

Majesty’s Blademaster to the Ordnance Ofc.; A Court supporter, he probably

left London with the King; PW Stow-on-the-Wold, 1646.

Drum-Major Francis Barnes                             :

Surgeon, Mr. Thornhill                                     :

Sergeant Benfield                                              :

Sergeant Randle Whittacker                              : Capt. Walthall’s Company; Was with the regiment from Edgehill (1642)

to the surrender at Stow-on-the-Wold (1646).

Corporeal Peter Furnace                                    :

Corporeal Balfour Coldron                                :

Other Ranks: George Turner, William Booth, Thomas Jones, Thomas Lee, Christopher Loe, Robert Earney, John Foxe of Kelsall (Cheshire; Capt. Walter’s Company, Edgehill), William Pemberton (Capt. Cholmondley’s Company, Edgehill; also at Naseby), Randle Robinson (Capt. Cholmondley’s Company).

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