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On this day, 3rd March 1645, just 4 days after the Battle of Weymouth, some of the captured Crabchurch Conspirators were taken up to the Nothe headland overlooking Weymouth Bay and tried for their crimes, namely, the attempt to betray and overthrow the parliamentary garrison commanded by Colonel William Sydenham.

At least two were executed on the spot. Captain John Cade, an ex royalist sea-captain and, the former constable of Weymouth, John Mills.

This brave man, Mills, unrepentant to the last was ‘immortalised’ in the diary of the puritan regimental preacher of Sydenham’s garrison, Peter Ince. He wrote … “He (Mills) most desperately, without any sign or token of sorrow or repentance, when he was upon the ladder, desperately threw himself off not showing any signs of humiliation or calling upon God, for mercy on his soul, but carelessly, in a most desperate manner died, not so much as praying to God to receive his soul”.

He then went on to write about the other conspirators … “There be not many of the villains left, as their sin hath found them out, divers of them are slain, Fabian Hodder and others are in prison at Poole and other places, not yet tried, and some are run away”.

Hodder, the chief architect of the conspiracy, never did meet the hangman, as he somehow managed to escape from Poole Gaol before Sydenham could come for him, the man he blamed for the death of his brother, Francis. Hodder made his way to the continent, only returning after the restoration of Charles 11.