|The Norse leader,
King Harald, sent his
weaker troops forward along near the ford. This was marshy ground so
progress would be slow, but retreat would be equally difficult.
Perhaps appreciating that they would
eventually be outnumbered, Earl Morcar
attacked at the ford with initial success. This drew the English from
their high ground into the marsh where the fighting bogged down. Light casualties leave the battle and limp back towards York, 1½
King Harald allows Earl Morcar
to advance. The English defenders gradually come off their secure bank
and go down into the ford.
On the English left flank the Norse
make no progress as the ditch is easy to defend.