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Sunday, 8 November 2015

Balaclava - The Opening Moves

The Russian Commander, General Liprandi, buoyed by the rapid collapse of the first two redoubts and the lack of response from the allies decides to press forwards and take the the rest of the Causeway Heights. A mass of infantry, supported by guns and around 3,000 cavalry start moving towards redoubts 3 and 4.

Meanwhile, up on Sapoune Heights Lord Raglan, who has arrived with his staff, issues some orders. He sends messengers to the 1st and 4th Divisions to deploy into the valley using the southern route. Their response is tested, and while The Duke of Cambridge immediately orders the 1st Division to move, General Cathcart and his 4th Division, who are taking breakfast, refuse to respond. Several more orders from Raglan are refused. Raglan's second order is to Lord Lucan ordering him to deploy two Regiments of cavalry to support Sir Colin Campbell in his defence of Balaclava harbour. Lucan orders Scarlett and his Heavy Brigade to provide support.

Shortly after, the action around Redoubt No 3 begins.The Turks open fire with muskets and cannon taking out over 100 Russian infantry:

At the same time Redoubt No 4 opens up on the Russian cavalry in North Valley, causing over 50 casualties amongst the Cossacks:

However, the Russians quickly overrun Redoubt 3 and Cossacks gallop forward to cut down the fleeing Turkish survivors:

The redoubt above Kadioki protecting Balaclava Harbour has a pop at the charging Cossacks, but to no effect:

Liprandi seeing the damage being caused to his cavalry by the guns in Redoubt No 4 orders four cavalry regiments to capture the redoubt. The Turks fire shot and muskets downing a few cavalry, but unsupported, with their comrades from Rebout No 3 being cut to pieces by Cossacks, they break and are also destroyed.:

The Turkish gunners in Redoubt No 5, who are unprotected by infantry, fire a few shots into the cavalry before breaking and running down the hill. The Russians have taken the Causeway Heights and begin to consolidate their gains:

Meanwhile Scarlett has deployed two regiments of the Heavy Brigade on to the left flank of the 93rd; the empty Redoubt No5 can be seen to their front:

And, the skirl of the pipes can be heard as the Black Watch arrive at the head the 1st Division,

But it will take time for the whole Division to reach the field. Cathcart, having finished his breakfast and receiving three orders from Raglan, reluctantly orders the 4th Division to deploy across to Balaclava - probably too late.

So the scene is set for the next phase.................