Open main menu
Sherwood Forest
Sherwood Forest

The Coterel gang was an armed group in the English North Midlands that roamed across the countryside in the late 1320s and early 1330s, a period of political upheaval and lawlessness. Despite repeated attempts by the crown to suppress James Coterel and his band, they committed murder, extortion and kidnapping across the Peak District. Basing themselves in Sherwood Forest (pictured), other wooded areas of north Nottinghamshire and the peaks of Derbyshire, the Coterels frequently cooperated with other groups, including the Folville gang. As members of the gentry, Coterel and his immediate supporters were expected to assist the crown in the maintenance of law and order, rather than encourage its collapse, but most of the band received royal pardons following service abroad or in Scotland. Groups such as the Coterels may have inspired many of the stories woven around Robin Hood in the 15th century. (Full article...)