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Battle Report Sobral October 12th 1810

Battle Sobral 12th October 1810



The allied position in the lines of Torres Vedras was formidable. Sobral de Monte Agraco lay just North of the lines of Torres Verdas. The salient provided the allies with an excellent position to monitor the French deployments as well as interdict the main East-West road approximately one mile North of the town. Even though the French artillery had not arrived, Clauzel received orders to capture the town.

Setup.   North  ^

The terrain map was put together with brown wrapping paper – 80gsm 750mm x 50m Kraft Wrapping paper. Overlapping in the middle set to size 4’ by 4’ with side edge extra for strength of a few inches – glued with PVA / glue stick. Terrain map basic layout courtesy of Michael Hopper’s - Rise of Albion scenario book. So I sketched out to scale and painted on with Acrylic paints to designate the hills, roads (an adaption I chose from the lovely maps created by Colin in our 20mm campaigns – see Simon’s blog on http://www.servicerationdistributionhobby.blogspot.com ). Found with 15mm figures the 2D maps are the easiest and Michael’s maps and positions of terrain make all the difference in the battle. So cheap, easy to store, and if you are finished with it then environmentally easy to dispose of.


In this map the hills are gentle, except the large steep hill on the East which is impassable. Sobral is near the centre on a gentle hill, with a ravine South of it (occupied by a Battalion of Erskine’s). So the lowest point is the West where the road enters.


The basic scenario involves the French pushing in on the British to push them out of Sobral.


I am playing the British CinC Spencer, with Erskine as General who has 2 Average, and 1 Light Infantry (the 71st which is occupying Sobral) and 1 Skirmisher . Low the other General with 4 Average (KGL) and 1 Skirmisher (which is outside Sobral), Cameron with 1 Elite, and 2 Average (of which one is large) off table until turn 3 . Alan is the French CinC Clauzel with a sapper unit, with General Menard who has 4 Poor and 1 Skirmisher, Taupin 3 Poor (one unit large) and 1 Skirmisher, and Godart 3 Average (one of these is given the sapper), 1 Poor , and 1 Skirmisher. The British allies setup first with Erskine on defend orders the rest on attack orders. The French who deploy second are all on attack orders. You would get the full scenario details in Michael’s book - Rise of Albion.


Night falls French minor victory 1 point versus British 0.  There was just one more turn to do but neither side could get any more victory points – so we called it a day here.


It would have been a different scenario result if the 71st had managed to hold Sobral for at least a few turns. As it was the speed of the French – and some very descent dice rolls gave the French a quick victory. Cameron attacking on the left flank caused Menard to pull his division of 2nd rates back and hold the hill. Cameron was too slow, and the Allies just were not on form on this scenario. But actually very true to the historical outcome. A French quick attack capturing Sobral in two hours, and the Allies pulled back South just below the ravine.

Category: Battle Reports | Added by: RMcN (18-Feb-2024) | Author: Ross McNeil
Views: 72 | Tags: Peninsular war., Shako 2, Napoleonic, Napoleonic 15mm, Napoleonic Battle, Sobral, Shako II, Michael Hopper | Rating: 5.0/2
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