Gordon Riots

The disturbances started off in fairly good humour but degenerated in the hot weather of June 1780. By the 2nd June MPs were barricading themselves inside Parliament. The Foot Guards were in St Margaret Street hemmed in by the sheer mass of people who amused themselves by knocking their hats off and poking them with sticks, but later the crowds became more aggressive. The riots lasted a week causing great damage to property and many casualties. The Guards were unable to cope despite being given freedom to act without waiting for direction from the civil magistrates. Reinforcements arrived in the shape of no less than 20 regiments.

Regimental details


by Stephen Luscombe