East Britain would push southwards into the locality of the Isle of Eels in East Cambridgeshire. Their assault would be focused in the area between the Great Ouse and a pair of canals that cut through the countryside. This would culminate in an assault on Ely, thereby creating a bridge across the Great Ouse and establishing for the first time reliable travel on foot between the nations. From this East British Royal Guardsmen, adept at hand-to-hand combat, could supplement Essex and Woodbridge troops in pivotal hand-to-hand combat.
At the same time, Essex would attack on the southernmost axis into South (and parts of East) Cambridgeshire, seizing the majority of the territory inside the Rivers Great Ouse and Cam, which would include the eastern portion of the remnants of Cambridge. This would secure the land border for the expansion, and provide Essex with an area for future expansions along more of the Great Ouse and establish a region of control from Stevenage northwards. The Royal Guardsmen would then join these soldiers, combining the melee skills of the Guardsmen with modern firepower from the Essaxons.
Concurrently, Woodbridge would launch a northwards assault, driving up the eastern side of the Great River Ouse, to cut off the numerically inferior forces of the True British Army in Norfolk and to establish another land border. It would be gaining the parts of the districts of Thetford and Hunstanton. This would allow for a direct land route to East Britain and provide the country with the ability to sweep eastwards into the rest of Norfolk.
After that, the three armies would have a strong and united border and if the True British Army raised its ugly head again, they would be ready. That is, if everything went according to plan.
Part One of the War: Conquest
East British soldiers ride out to Ely or the Isle of Eels. In order to speed the advance, horses are used. The meagre naval forces encircle the coast line. With the main body of the force is a quantity of primitive cannon, the gunpowder utilised from human urine. It was estimated that it would take approximately seven hours to reach Ely. Although it took them seven hours to reach Ely, it took another three for scouts to accurately decide on a safe path to take through the swam to the fortress at its centre. Once the path was chosen, the Guardsmen discarded their cavalry, then waited until nightfall for their attack. Scouts had taken great care to preserve the attacks secrecy. At 2330 hours, the attack was unleashed. Engineers placed charges on the walls of the fortress and once the walls were down allowed the Guardsmen through. Many men fell as they charged, the weak spring guns ineffective against firearms. Thankfully the confusion brought on by the explosion prevented a massacre. Then the Guardsmen proved their worth, drawing their combat blades and engaging the TBA in ferocious hand to hand fighting. To add t the chaos, a group of musket armed Guardsmen unleashed volley after volley, scything down any TBA snipers. The cannon artillery proved invaluable, cracking open the remnants of the walls and detonating arms caches.
By morning the battle was over, enemy units were being rounded up and detained, ready for transportation to Spalding. Around 98 men had died on the East British side and many more on the side of the TBA. Several hours later, King William was transported to the scene of the Battle. He watched the erection of the Flag of East Britain. Ely and its inhabitants were officially incorporated into the Kingdom of East Britain. TBA firearms were confiscated and their weapons caches transported to Bourne. While reconning the area, Guardsmen were horrified to discover the remains of those Woodbridge men who had been captured by the TBA. This further steeled the East British resolve. Over the course of the day, repairs were made to the fort, stragglers were rooted out and supplies brought forward. Unlike the fast-paced tactics of their allies the more primitive East Britons moved more slowly, consolidating their territory. In the evening a plan was decided. More troops would be brought down, if necessary conscription would be put into use. Then the modern weaponry confiscated from the TBA would be utilised. The Guardsmen would then advance to Soham from Ely.
While the Guardsmen were marching down the road from Ely to Soham they were disturbed to find that large sections of the road had been destroyed by bombs. The men were reassured to find that large quantities of TBA men had been killed. Feeling that the battle to come would be easier, they came to Soham at 10 am. Much of the garrison were exhausted remnants of the men at Ely and the rest were a token affair. The Battle of Soham was far easier than the Battle of Ely. What the Royal Guardsmen didn't know was that the success of their campaign was because of the quantities of TBA soldiers bled south into an assault on Essex itself. The Battle of Soham lead to the capture of Soham. A decision was made in Bourne to establish the East British Military Administration Zone(EBMAZ). This area consisted of conquered land that was run by the military. In the evening the bodies of the Woodbridge soldiers who had been found were buried and were posthumously granted the Medal of the Glorious Few, a military honour granted to those who have fought with utmost bravery for their country.
A massive recruitment drive was brought into force. Men signed up in their droves and were hastily prepared for war. Planned next was an all out assault in land. They were to capture the River Ouse, town by town and secure it against the TBA. First of all, they were to capture Kings Lynn. The 22nd and 23rd were devoted to planning the assault. All the while the rickety communication system meant they were entirely unaware of the disturbances effecting Essex.
After two days planning and preparation, the Royal Guardsmen in Ely boarded their ramshackle rafts and went north to Kings Lynn. At sea, waiting for green flares was the massed Royal Coastguard. Over the course of the day, a long line of rafts drifted along, occassionaly pausing to capture a village. In the wake of the military were the auxiliaries who were trained to hold the land. At the same time, Guardsmen were advancing over land towards Kings Lynn. It looked to be the biggest military shake down in East British history. However the tension was drawn out as it took over three days to reach Kings Lynn. Amongst the generals their were fears of overstretches.
Today, the Raftmen as they had become known as colloquially attacked Kings Lynn. At the same time, green flares were released an attack from the sea was unleashed. While this was happening, artillery was activated by the ground troops. The Battle of Kings Lynn was the most notorious and largest battle to date. Going on for over eight hours as Guardsmen fought hand to hand, house by house with the TBA garrison. The climax of the battle took place aty the city centre. Pounded by artillery and gunfire, the TBA defenders gave in and King Lynn was incorporated into the EBMAZ. Over the next couple of weeks, East Britain consolidated their gains, adding clan territories by making deals.
For now at least, the conflict was over in the main part for East Britain. However, the speed with which they had achieved their objectives meant that TBA stragglers were spread through the EBMAZ, clans were defying East British law, soldiers were spread thin, ammunition was running low and fortifications were few and far between.
Part Two of the War: Pacification
Unlike in the first period of the war, it is hard to track movements of troops by time or date. Guardsmen were reassigned into smaller groups and over a period of weeks they were trained to act in much smaller units as a team. Unfortunately this long period of training left the wound in the EBMAZ to fester and worsen. Indeed prior to the reinsertion of troops, it is believed only 10% of the EBMAZ was under effective East British control. On the 12th July, two weeks after cession of official hostilities, the Royal Guardsmen were put back into the EBMAZ. They had a number of objectives which will be detailed below.
Destruction of TBA remnants
This was a priority for the Royal Guardsmen. With the help of loyalist clans they were able to target concentrations of the stragglers and call up reinforcements. Though there were some casulaties, East Britain had the advantage of having acquired a great number of conventional armaments from Scotland. As this was such a priority, the TBA was either interned or eliminated by late July. Captured TBA units were put to use in the reconstruction effort in the rest of Lincolnshire.
The clans are a fact of life in post-Doomsday Britain. Although places like Bourne or other built-up areas are well under the control of the government, areas like the EBMAZ which are sparsely populated and are unused to the firm hand of law are the domain of the clans and any attempt to secure control or consolidate territorial gains must be done by acclimatising with friendly clans and using force or other means to turn hostile clans. This was harder because many of the clans had been manipulated and controlled by the TBA for a long time. In order to turn them the Guardsmen richly rewarded those clans who did treat with them. Many clans were turned purely by the promise of material security. Others had to be crushed by force. Many of these more extreme clans were found to have TBA officers in their upper echelons. This priority was noted to be completed in early August.
This is still ongoing as of August 2010. Forts along the external borders are densest and newest. Others deeper in the EBMAZ are more likely to be reconstructed TBA forts. With regular shipments of weapons and ammunition from Scotland these are not primitive forts. Along with construction materials from Essex and military advisors from Woodbridge, these stage of the project is predicted to end in early November.
For East Britain at least the result was favourable. The lack of TBA units in the area had been a great advantage and there were few casualties. They had gained profitable agricultural land, the Royal Guardsmen had proved themselves in combat and East Britain had earned the respect of its neighbours. Of course there were going to be problems as the three powers divided up land. And there was always the possibility of the TBA raising its ugly head once more.