25th August, 1642, the Royal Standard was erected at Nottingham. One of the first acts of open hostility in the neighbourhood of Sheffield was an attack upon the house of Sir Edward Rodes, a zealous Parliamentarian, at Great Houghton. This was made by Captain Grey, a Northumberland gentleman, at the head of 300 dragoons. Instantly the whole of the western part of the wapentake was in arms.
Rotherham Moor was the place of rendezvous. “Though to this worthy knight,” say the Diurnals in an article from York dated September 19, 1642, “it is a sad accident, yet it has put courage into our West Riding, for on a sudden 1,500 men were in arms to take these cavaliers on their march; but they got notice of it, and escaped by night to Mansfield in Nottinghamshire. Lord Fairfax, Sir John Savile of Lupset, and Sir William Lister of Thornton-in-Cravenare so moved at this, that it will prove advantageous to that country; for they will have 5,000 men armed in a few days, and have sent to Sir John Hotham for 1,000 foot, one troop of horse, 12 barrels of powder, one ton of match and other necessaries; bein resolved to have satisfaction out of the malignants of the county, or die for it. The suffering these Northumberland rogues to pass through the county hath taught us wit, and it is resolved no more shall come this way”