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Wednesday, October 28, 2015

27 March 1813 – Battle of Zamora

Tactical map of battle area

Background to battle
Encounter battle with two French and two British corps on attack orders
French – 36000 infantry, 2000 cavalry, 60 guns
British -  28000 infantry, 2000 cavalry, 60 guns 
Table at start of wargame
2 British – arrive start of move 1
6 French – arrive start of move 1
HQ British – arrive start of move 5
4 British – arrive start of move 5
HQ French – arrive start of move 5
14 French – arrive start of move 5
2 British and 6 French arrive on table and advance south of Zamora
Both corps send infantry into the city.
4 British and 14 French arrive and advance north of the city
Both sides reinforce skirmish in city
French suffer 10% skirmish casualties and are shaken
British reserve receive 10% artillery casualties and are disordered
Wellington orders his infantry to attack the city
In the first round of melee both sides suffer 10% casualties
Both pass morale test
British win second round of melee
French rout with 50% casualties
Support brigade in city joins rout
British pursue routed infantry
Two French support brigades outside city join rout
Both sides enter northern half of city
French rout

By nightfall the British have captured three of the four city sections
With four brigades in rout Soult orders his army to retreat
The British have lost 1600 infantry
The French have lost  3200 infantry and four brigades in rout

The battle is a close victory for Wellington
6th French corps is broken, but 14th corps untouched.

Battle Summary
The British started the battle heavily outnumbered in infantry
3 British advanced to occupy the southern half of the city
6 French advanced to block them
The French infantry in Zamora suffered first casualties
The British brigade suffered artillery casualties
Both commanders sent a second brigade to support the attack
The artillery on both sides pounded the reserve infantry
But the battle was decided by the leading infantry brigades in the city
The French were the first to become shaken
Wellington immediately ordered the highland to charge them with the bayonet
The first round of melee was a draw, but the French suffered more casualties
The highlanders won the second round and the French routed with 50% casualties
The support brigade broke with them
The highlanders advanced in pursuit
Two French brigades outside the city joined the melee
4 British arrived and sent two rifle brigades into the northern half of the city
14 French countered by sending two of their brigades to contest the city
With the loss of four brigades in rout Soult ordered a general retreat
The British had lost  1600 casualties
The French had lost  3200 casualties and four brigades in rout

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