Preparations for war with France
As negotiations were underway in France, England was preparing for the invasion of France.
Plot to overthrow the King
Led by Richard Earl of Cambridge, Henry's cousin, a plot to assassinate the King and replace him with the Earl of March who was the true heir to the throne was hatched. The revolt brought together all the old enemies of Henry including Lord Scrope (Archbishop Scrope's nephew) and the Lollards. The Earl of March whose loyalties were with the king informed Henry of the plot the night before and the rebels were arrested. Several were executed.
Henry sails for France
Preparations for war were complete and Henry's army set sail from Southampton for the French coast.
English fleets lands in Normandy
Henry's army landed on the north bank of the Seine estuary near to the town of Harfleur (now part of Le Havre). Henry organised the siege
of the town and waited for it to fall.
Harfleur falls to the English
The town held out for five weeks in which time the English soldiers were starting to suffer from disease caught from their camps in the marshes. The people in the town were not doing much better and when it was clear that the town was not going to be rescued, the citizens surrendered. Henry treated the towns people with respect and let them leave.
The march to Calais
Henry's plans for invading France had been dented by the time it took to capture Harfleur and the affect of disease on his men. He decided to move his men to Calais which was under English control.
Henry crosses the Somme
Henry's plan was to get across the Somme at its estuary where it was relatively easy to cross but he received word that the crossing
was being guarded by the French. Henry had no other choice but to follow the west bank of the Somme south into French territory to find a suitable crossing point. His men were short of food as Henry had told them to take only a few day's supplies expecting them to reach Calais. Henry finally found a crossing point that was unguarded and his army crossed the Somme.
The Battle of Agincourt
The English army met the French army near the town of Agincourt. Although the English were outnumbered three to one, Henry used the local terrain to his advantage. The French cavalry were hit heavily by the English archers and French knights got bogged down in the wet fields. The French were defeated and Henry ordered that no prisoners should be taken apart from the extremely important knights who could be ransomed. The death toll amongst the French nobility was high.
Henry returns to England
After a few weeks recovering in Calais from their ordeal, Henry and the English army returned to England to a hero's welcome.