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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

11 March 1813 – Battle of Agualar

Tactical map of battle area

Background to battle
Both corps have orders to attack Agualar
British – 1200 infantry, 1000 cavalry and 30 guns
Spanish – 4000 infantry
French – 1600 infantry, 1000 cavalry and 30 guns

Table at start of wargame

6th French arrive on table start of move 1
Spanish militia brigade will not hold Agualar unless supported by British

As the French approach the town, the Spanish garrison start to retreat to the left hand half of the town.

The British hussars charge the French chasseurs, but lose the melee and withdraw shaken.

French infantry enter right half of town, Spanish militia continue to retreat towards left half.   Rifle brigade enter left half to support Spanish.

French cavalry charge and rout the shaken British hussars.   Nearby gunners are shaken by the rout

Remainder of British corps form square against French cavalry.

French infantry continue to advance through right hand town section
Disordered French cavalry return to corps to rally

Shaken British gunners fail morale and rout, taking the nearby rifle brigade with them.

With three brigades in rout Wellington orders a general retreat.
The British have lost 300 cavalry
The French have suffered no casualties

The battle is convincing French victory
The British will retreat on 12 March 1813

Battle Summary
The battle opened with the Spanish militia holding Agualar.
Both corps advanced towards the town
One French brigade was sent to engage the Spanish garrison.
The British hussars charged the French cavalry to delay their deployment
The French won the melee, and the British withdrew shaken
The French then charged again, and routed the hussars
They failed to rally and pursued the fleeing hussars, causing more casualties
Most of the British corps were in column of march, and had to form square
The gunners now failed their morale, and routed.
The nearest infantry brigade also failed their morale and joined the rout
With the loss of his cavalry and artillery Wellington ordered a general retreat
The British have lost  300 casualties and have three brigades in rout
The French have suffered no casualties