Throughout history, it is not uncommon to find Men of the Cloth who were also formidable warriors. Such was Bishop of St Andrews, William Lamberton, who was renowned for his influential role during the Scottish Wars of Independence.
He first campaigned under the leadership of William Wallace after the Battle of Stirling Bridge in 1297.
But it was his later relationship with Robert the Bruce that defined his place in history.
Lamberton became Bruce’s great friend and adviser, particularly in the difficult years leading up to Bannockburn.
In so doing, he made his mark on many notable Scottish victories, but none more so than his part in turning the outcome of Bannockburn. On the second day of battle against overwhelming odds, the Scots army was beginning to flag. Lamberton was watching progress from the nearby Torbrex Hill, surrounded by the baggage train folk - Farmers, servants, cooks, blacksmiths. Abandoning the safety of his vantage point he led the rag-tag hoards, armed only with sticks, kitchen knives, meat cleavers and cudgels – down the hill and into battle, waving blankets and sheets for flags. Seeing what they thought were reinforcements, the English assumed them to be warriors, and their resolve was broken.