New Battle of Hastings book neglects sources, says History Today reviewer

Marc Morris, author of The Norman Conquest, finds some of the facts in a new history of the subject by John Grehan and Martin Mace "uncomfortable." The Battle of Hastings 1066: The Uncomfortable Truth places the site of the famous battle at a different location, Caldbec Hill. His review is on the History Today website.

From the review:

The one other fact that has remained certain down the ages is the battle’s location. Until recent times it has been universally accepted that the action took place in the town of Battle, some seven miles north-west of Hastings itself. According to tradition William the Conqueror marked his victory by building a great abbey on the spot where Harold fell. Happily the abbey survives and so enables us to identify the battlefield with some precision.

The authors of the present volume are unhappy with this tradition. The site at Battle, they insist, does not fit with the primary source material. They contend that the fighting in 1066 took place at a different location, not far away, called Caldbec Hill.

It is impossible to catalogue here all the contortions, omissions, misconceptions, mistakes and absurdities required to sustain this view. The argument for Caldbec Hill ultimately rests on the statement of the ‘D version’ of the contemporary Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, that Harold came to oppose William at ‘the grey apple tree’. In the 1960s it was suggested that this long-lost landmark stood on top of Caldbec Hill. This is an unprovable assumption, so the authors settle for repeatedly stating it as fact (‘It is universally accepted’, we are told).