Meanwhile a strong party was formed against her, amongst the most powerful of the Scottish barons. They met (Sept. 20, 1286) at Turnberry, the castle of Robert Bruce earl of Carrick, son of Robert Bruce lord of Annandale and Cleveland. Here they were joined by two powerful English barons, Thomas de Clare, brother of Gilbert earl of Gloucester, and Richard de Burgh earl of Ulster. Thomas de Clare was nephew to Bruce's wife, and both he and his brother the Earl of Gloucester were naturally anxious to support Bruce's title to the crown, as the descendant of David earl of Huntingdon, brother of King William the Lion.
Nor was the scheme in any respect a desperate one, for Bruce already had great influence. There assembled at Turnberry, Patrick earl of Dunbar, with his three sons; Walter Stewart earl of Menteith; Bruce's own son the Earl of Carrick, and Bernard Bruce; James, the High Steward of Seotland, with John his brother; Angus son of Donald the Lord of the Isles, and Alexander his son. These barons, whose influence could bring into the field the strength of almost the whole of the west and south of Scotland, now entered into a bond, or covenant, by which it was declared, that they would thenceforth adhere to and take part with one another, on all occasions, and against all persons, saving their allegiance to the King of England, and also their allegiance to him who should gain the kingdom of Scotland by right of descent from King Alexander, then lately deceased.
Not long after this, the number of the Scottish regents was reduced to four, by the assassination of Duncan earl of Fife, and the death of the Earl of Buchan; the Steward, another of the regents, pursuing an interest at variance with the title of the young queen, joined the party of Bruce, heart-burnings and jealousies arose between the nobility and the governors of the kingdom. These soon increased, and at length broke into an open war between the parties of Bruce and Baliol,which for two years after the death of the king continued its ravages in the country.