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The Richard III Society

Promoting research into the life and times of Richard III since 1924

Patron: HRH The Duke of Gloucester KG GCVO

News Update

     — 2022

29/06: Essay Prizes

21/06: Anne F. Sutton

21/06: Windows for a King

01/06: Zoom lectures

01/06: The Lost King

01/06: June Ricardian

14/04: Festivals talk

12/03: Book of Hours

08/03: Bulletin Update

28/02: Zoom May '22

28/02: Zoom Jun '22

27/02: Schools Conference

03/01: Zoom Feb '22

29/01: Zoom Mar '22


     — 2021

21/12: Business Manager

11/12: Mike Ingram

10/12: Booking form

10/12: Copy Editor

09/12: Cathedral Update

03/12: Zoom Feb '22

01/12: K3 teachers wanted

26/11: Cathedral Closure

10/11: Gold Book

10/11: Zoom Jan '22

19/10: Remembrance

12/10: '22 Essay prize

01/09: Zoom Dec '21

01/09: The Lost King

24/08: Battle of Barnet

18/08: Bosworth ceremony

26/07: Members' survey

06/07: Bosworth 2021

06/07: Events Coordinator

04/07: '21 Essay Prize

02/06: Zoom Sept '21

14/06: Ambil Award

02/06: Zoom August '21

02/06: Zoom July '21

20/05: Zoom June '21

16/04: WOTR stanps

16/04: Postage charges

21/03: Zoom May '21

15/03: Zoom Lectures

24/02: Book Sale

12/02: 2021 AGM

12/02: Tewkesbury Festival

31/01: Essay Prizes

25/01: Zoom April '21

11/01: Zoom Mar '21

04/01: 2020/21 AGM


     — 2020

30/12: Phil Stone

27/11: Editor vacancy

27/11: Fotheringhay Carols

23/11: Essay extension

18/11: Zoom Feb '21

04/11: Education Website

04/11: Zoom presentation

07/09: Essay Prizes

07/09: Paypal Account

22/06: Virtual Bosworth

22/06: New English Wills

01/06: Study Days

22/06: New Education Officer

27/05: AGM 2020

11/05: Independent inquiry

26/04: Matthew Lewis

18/04: Membership registration

14/02: Reinterment anniversary


     — 2019

23/12: Battlefield developments

16/12: Gold Half Angel Coin

13/09: Plantagenet Tour

13/09: York Waits Concert

31/08: Legal Status Result

18/08: John Audsley

06/08: Commemorative plaque

23/07: Easy Sunday Music

23/07: Leicester Events

23/06: Last Charge

14/06: EC Nominations

07/06: Legal Status

08/03: Gift Membership

2018: Open Letter

18/01: Rhoda Edwards

07/06: Legal Status


     — 2018

25/11: Christmas posting

10/10: Memorial service

12/09: Bosworth debate

23/08: Bosworth threatened

11/08: Bosworth 2018

30/07: Missing Princes

23/07: Keith Horry

18/05: John Asdown-Hill

29/04: King Not Guilty

06/07: Middelham Festival

25/03: Reburial Evensong

25/03: Greyfriars site


     — 2017 —

02/10: Wreath laying

14/09: Membership renewal

19/08: Bosworth Commemoration

15/07: Cathedral Play

15/07: John Ashdown Hill

15/06: Bosworth events

28/05: Book of Hours

28/05: Society Sponsorship

28/05: Bowes Museum talk

28/04: Society Research Blog

24/03: Hotel Room

20/03: Reburial Statement

18/03: Home Page changing

26/03: Reburial weekend

19/03: Artwork dedication

09/02: Biggest Lies

01/02: Membership Discounts

16/01: Book of Hours


     — 2016 —

05/11: Bridport Memorial

01/11: Schools membership

01/11: Junior membership

30/10: Middleham Statue

25/10: Visit to Bridport

16/10: New membership cards

09/10: Royal Photographic Society

05/10: Sandal Castle

20/09: Richard III & Henry Wyatt

07/09: New Richard III Standard

04/09: Middleham Noticeboard

18/07: Nottingham Castle

11/07: Feature about York

23/06: Richard III tops polls

14/06: Visitor Centre quotations

14/05: 'Hollow Crown' drama

14/05: No hunchback

28/04: Margaret of York

30/03: Groats Sale

26/03: Photo-mosaic

26/03: Anniversary of reburial

10/03: Church roof appeal

17/03: Groats Auction


     — 2015 —

09/10: Investiture

16/09: GMB 40th

10/09: Facial Reconstruction

31/07: Agincourt 600th

25/06: Moira Habberjam

12/06: Birthday Honours

08/04: After Leicester

04/03: Visitor Centre

06/01: Great Lives


     — 2014 —

31/10: Reburial

22/08: Remembrance

07/08: Reburial dates

23/06: Tomb meeting

23/05: JR Judgement

17/03: Judicial Review

27/02: The King's DNA

11/02: The Gastons


     — 2013 —

26/11: JR Adjourned

02/10: The Kings Grave

16/08: Judicial Review

30/06: Richard by Turner

23/06: Richard by Jamieson

23/06: The York Wills

23/06: Discovery DVD

23/06: Orchestral music

12/03: Adjournment debate

28/02: Meet the team

27/02: Family trees

15/02: Donation request

13/02: Tomb design

08/02: Final resting place

06/02: PMQ's

05/02: A 'new' Richard

04/02: Richard's remains

richardiii coat of arms


RIII Essay Prize - winners announced!

We are pleased to announce the first, second and third prize winners of the 2022 Richard III Society Essay Prize.

 • First Prize is awarded to Jake Manketo, Westminster School, for his essay: The collapse of Richard III’s regime at Bosworth in 1485 was the consequence of his approach to kingship. To what extent is this the case?

 • Second Prize goes to Fatima Abras, Edgbaston High School for Girls, for her essay: To what extent does Richard III deserve his negative reputation?

 • Third Prize is awarded to Patrick Maxwell, St Edward’s School, Oxford, for his essay: Richard III and foreign policy: an attempted resurrection of the Hundred Years War?

Our grateful thanks go to our judging panel of Dr Joanna Laynesmith, Reading University; Dr Gordon McKelvie, University of Winchester, and Julie Bungey a recently retired sixth form teacher. Feedback from the judging panel on the winning essays and comments from the author's themselves can be found on The Wars of the Roses website. Congratulations to our winners! Iain Farrell Education Officer Richard III Society


Anen F. Sutton

It is with much sadness that we report the passing of Dr Anne Sutton on Saturday 18 June. Anne had bravely battled cancer for the past two years, stoically continuing with her work culminating in the 2022 edition of The Ricardian and the recent publication of The King’s Work: The Defence of the North under the Yorkist Kings 1471-85.

Anne was a member of the Society’s Executive Committee from 1976 until 2020, thereafter of the current Board. She took over the editorship of The Ricardian from Peter Hammond in June 1979 and remained in post until her death. She was also a founder trustee of the Richard III and Yorkist History Trust and for many years its Managing Trustee. The Trust's own tribute to Anne can be found here.

Anne’s output was prolific, spanning nearly fifty years, and her contribution to fifteenth-century scholarship has been outstanding. Her work, together with Livia Visser Fuchs, on the books once owned by Richard III is of particular note.

Her greatest achievement was undoubtedly her forty-four year editorship of The Ricardian, a journal now recommended in university reading lists and constantly cited in publications covering our period of history. As a result the Society’s standing amongst the academic community and the wider history-reading public has been greatly enhanced, it is a substantial legacy she leaves us.

We owe her an immense debt of gratitude. Our profound condolences, on behalf of the Society, go to her family and friends.

The Board of the Richard III Society


Windows for the King

In 2024 Barnard Castle will celebrate 550 years since the lordship of the town was granted to Richard, Duke of Gloucester, later Richard III. Windows for the King will install seven etched glass windows in the porch of St Mary's to mark this anniversary.

St Mary’s church council (PCC), in partnership with the Northern Dales Richard III Group (NDRIIIG), are excited to announce a major project to commemorate Richard III, Duke of Gloucester and King of England, in Barnard Castle. Our ‘Windows for the King’ appeal aims to install seven etched glass windows above the inner porch doorway of St Mary’s Parish Church, Barnard Castle to commemorate Richard and his close connection with St Mary’s.

As Lord of Barnard Castle, Richard invested huge sums of money to re-build St Mary’s and transform it into a Collegiate Church: this project was close to completion when he died at Bosworth. The College would have been dedicated to Christ, the Virgin Mary, St Margaret of Scotland and St Ninian.

Three central etched panels will depict Christ with Mary, and these two northern saints personally connected with Richard. A further two panels will portray St Helen of the Holy Cross and St Catherine of Alexandria, saints with medieval chantries within or close to St Mary’s in the late C15th. The final two panels will show Ricardian boars, as ‘supporters’, as illustrated on the St Anthony effigy near the font in St Mary’s.

Alongside the 1934 Richard III Society window in St Alkelda & St Mary’s Middleham, and the Memorial Window in York Minster, given by the Society of Friends of Richard III in 1997, the Windows for the King will be a lasting tribute to Richard’s personal faith, and demonstrate his dedication to the North and to the town where he was Lord of the Manor from 1474.

You can make a donation to the project here.


July/August 2022 Zoom presentations

We are delighted to announce the details of two very interesting Zoom lectures in July and August.

Subject: The Middleham Jewel in Context: Discovery, Analysis and Meanings.

Speaker: Dr Kate Giles

Time: 14:00 (GMT)

Date: Saturday 16 July 2022


In her lecture which was first given to the Society at the Members’ Day in York in October 2021, Dr Kate Giles will reprise her analysis of this exquisite object in the Yorkshire Museum, telling the story of its discovery, analysis and interpretation, including new thoughts resulting from recent research by the York Museums Trust and the University of York. The Middleham Jewel was found in the 1980s by a metal detectorist and acquired by the Yorkshire Museum in the early 1990s. Since then, further discoveries and analysis have shed light on its possible meanings as a late medieval jewel with a complex biography which raises intriguing questions about its commission, ownership, use and loss.

Kate will share her thoughts and invite further reflections with members, who may have their own stories or ideas about its relevance to Richard III and his household.

Dr Kate Giles is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Archaeology at the University of York and Co-Director of its Centre for the Study of Christianity & Culture, with particular expertise in historic buildings.

How to book: As before, this event will be free to Society members and we are pleased to announce the total number of places has now increased to 200 per lecture. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.


Subject: The Survival of The Princes in The Tower.

Speaker: Matt Lewis

Time: 14:00 (GMT)

Date: Saturday 13 August 2022


Matt is repeating his lecture from December 2020 so that those who missed out will get a second chance to hear his fascinating presentation.

Matt takes a fresh look at the enduring mystery of the Princes in the Tower. Using documentary evidence, as well as the behaviour of key people wrapped up in the story, Matt examines what we really know, and whether we have been asking the wrong question for centuries. Instead of thinking about who murdered the Princes in the Tower, what if we ought to be considering the Survival of the Princes in the Tower?

Matt is an author and historian, Senior Presenter at History Hit, co-host of the Gone Medieval podcast, and Chair of the Richard III Society.

How to book: As before, this event will be free to Society members and we are pleased to announce the total number of places has now increased to 200 per lecture. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.


Exclusive: The Lost King release date

The Richard III Society can exclusively reveal that The Lost King will be released in the UK on 7th October. The film tells the remarkable true story of how one 'ordinary' woman overcame every obstacle to track down the final resting place of Richard III.

Starring Sally Hawkins and Steve Coogan, the film's release in cinemas coincides with the 10th Anniversary of the discovery of the remains of Richard III, the last English king to die in battle. In 2012, having been lost for over 500 years, the remains of King Richard III were discovered beneath a car park in Leicester. The search had been orchestrated by an amateur historian, Philippa Langley, whose unrelenting research had been met with incomprehension by her friends and family and with scepticism by experts and academics.

The Lost King is the life-affirming true story of a woman who refused to be ignored and who took on the country's most eminent historians, forcing them to think again about one of the most controversial kings in England's history.

If you're interested in finding out more about the film then head over to Twitter and follow @TheLostKingUK and follow for the latest news. Don't worry if you're not on Twitter — the Society will also keep you up to date!


June Ricardian Bulletin and Ricardian

The 2022 volume of The Ricardian, the June edition of the Ricardian Bulletin and booking forms together with the 2021 Membership Survey Results have now been mailed to members and should begin to reach UK members from 6 June after the Jubilee weekend. As this is quite a large pack our distributors have used strong gusseted envelopes to ensure safe delivery.

We would ask members to get in touch if they do not receive their pack by 20 June (UK members) and 4 July (overseas members). We hope Royal Mail will deliver in a timely manner but, obviously, we have no control over their service. Notification of non-delivery should be made to the Bulletin representatives Janine Lawrence (UK) and Dorothea Preis (overseas) and their contact details are printed on the back inside cover of the Bulletin.


Festivals 15th - 17th Centuries talk

A series of talks will be held in Coventry 20-22 April: CELEBRATIONS, COMMUNITIES AND PERFORMANCES: Festival occasions in Coventry from the 15th to the 17th centuries and their legacy.

Society members Lynda Pidgeon and Frederick Hepburn will be speakers. Lynda's paper is 'A Joyous Entry? Elizabeth Wydeviles visit to Coventry (Wednesday afternoon) and Fred's paper is 'The St Mary's Hall tapestry: some further thoughts' (Thursday morning).

Expert talks on each day with the latest research into Coventry’s unique contribution including: medieval processions and performances, the Trinity and Drapers guilds, the royal city, musical instruments used in Coventry, ceremonial swords, the urban soundscape, Coventry during the Reformation, links between Shakespeare and Coventry and the European context. Further information can be found on the advertorial flyer.


Richard's Book of Hours on display

Lambeth Palace Library in London are currently holding a small exhibition of selected highlights of their collection called Treasures from the Collection II. On display as part of this exhibition will be an item close to the heart of Ricardians: King Richard's Book of Hours. The exhibition is free and there is no need to book in advance. It is open now (10am to 5pm, Monday to Friday) and will continue until Friday 8th April 2022. For more information and to see the other treasures displayed alongside the Book of Hours, please visit the Lambeth Palace Library web site.


Ricardian Bulletin March 2022 update

UK members should have received their March Ricardian Bulletin by now or in the next day or so. The packages to overseas members are of course on their way.

Unfortunately, there has been an issue with the new paper wrapping and in some cases, the top seam has not been properly sealed. So far there have been no reports of damage to the Bulletin itself to warrant a replacement. However, if any member does receive a damaged copy please email the relevant Bulletin representative to arrange a replacement.

 • UK Bulletin Representative: Janine Lawrence

 • Overseas Bulletin Representative: Dorothea Preis

If you have not received the blue event booking booklet, please let the representatives know and we can either email you a copy or if you do not have printing facilities we will arrange a hard copy to be sent to you by post (so please specify your preference). However, there has only been one reported case of the omission so far.

The matter has of course been taken up with the distribution house and must be resolved for the June mailing which in addition to the Bulletin and blue booklet will also include the report on the Society Survey and the 2022 volume of The Ricardian.

We do apologise for any inconvenience to members.

The Ricardian Bulletin Committee

Richard III Society


Zoom presentation May 2022

We are delighted to announce May's Zoom presentation. As always, this event will be free to Society members but please note that we are restricted to a total of 200 places.

Subject: Medieval Herald in Peace and War.


Speaker: David Fawcett

Time: 14:00 (GMT)

Date: Saturday 14 May 2022

David Fawcett will explore the role of the Medieval Herald in Peace and War. David is a member of the Society based in Wiltshire, who is part of Salisbury Cathedral’s Education Programme. His historical research has tended to focus on lesser-known aspects of Medieval life, and the Medieval Herald attracted David’s interest as its beginnings seem to be shrouded in obscurity. This would include what their social status would have been. Their role interested David, a former military policeman, whose roles in peacetime and war differed somewhat. It seemed natural that the Medieval Herald might also need to have a second skill set in order to serve his master during times of conflict. The basis of David’s research formed the subject matter of his lecture.

David has been employed by English Heritage, CADW, The Chalke Valley Festival of History as well as local history groups and schools.

How to book: As before, this event will be free to Society members and we are pleased to announce the total number of places has now increased to 200 per lecture. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.


Zoom presentation June 2022

We are delighted to announce June's Zoom presentation. As always, this event will be free to Society members but please note that we are restricted to a total of 200 places.

Subject: Herbert family of Raglan (Monmouthshire) and their role in the Wars of the Roses.

Speaker: Dr Matthew Ward

Time: 14:00 (GMT)

Date: Saturday 25 June 2022

Dr Matthew Ward, Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Nottingham, will focus on the Herbert family of Raglan (Monmouthshire) and their role in the Wars of the Roses. The Herbert family played a crucial role in the Wars of the Roses, particularly during the period up to 1469. William Herbert (d. 1469) and his Welsh affinity were key to early Yorkist success and Edward IV rewarded him handsomely for his support, creating him Earl of Pembroke. Herbert, along with several of his kin, were killed after the Battle of Edgcote in 1469 and the family subsequently became less influential. Despite their fall from grace, the Herberts left a rich cultural legacy including manuscripts and church monuments. They also made extensive additions to Raglan castle.

In this talk Matt will look at the Herberts’ involvement in the Wars of the Roses and discuss their legacy. Matt also teaches for the Lifelong Learning Department at Aberystwyth University, offering courses on Richard III and the Wars of the Roses. His first book The Livery Collar in Late Medieval England and Wales (Boydell Press) is now available in paperback. He is currently writing his second book which examines loyalty during the fifteenth century. This will be published by Manchester University Press.

How to book: As before, this event will be free to Society members and we are pleased to announce the total number of places has now increased to 200 per lecture. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.


Ricardian Bulletin update

For some years the Bulletin has been despatched in a bio-degradable poly wrap but in the interests of the environment, we are pleased to announce we have switched to paper-wrapping which will be friendlier to the environment and which we hope will be approved by members.

There was an issue in the December mailing when a number of members did not receive the booking forms for Society events. With the March edition, the booking forms have been loosely inserted into the Bulletin which we trust will resolve the problem.

Finally, we had hoped to include in this edition the report of the Members' Survey conducted last summer. Unfortunately, this has not been possible but it will be sent out in June. Whilst online submissions were analysed by Survey Monkey, an online service tool, 31% (530) of the completed surveys were paper-based and had to be manually typed by Marlene Arnese, an immense task. The Society owes her a great debt of gratitude and we are sure the membership will show forbearance at this delay.

As always the Ricardian Bulletin Committee welcomes your feedback so after receiving and reading your March edition please feel free to contact your representatives, contact details on the back inside cover of the Bulletin.

Ricardian Bulletin Committee.


Schools Conference June 2022

The schools conference sponsored by the Society and announced at our last AGM is now open for schools to register their interest in the event.


Schools Conference: Wars of the Roses

Date: Tuesday 28 June 2022

Time: 9am - 3.30pm (GMT)


This conference is being provided at the request of teachers and is aimed at Year 12 students studying a 15th century option with an A level provider.

The event, which will be held online, contains a full programme of speakers who will present and discuss primary sources on key individuals of the Wars of the Roses. Q&A sessions are to be provided at the end of each presentation to allow students to interact with the speakers.

Schools are invited to register for this conference by sending an email to Iain Farrell. Visit Wars of the Roses website.

Fee: £50 per school. Payment details will be sent after registration.

Iain Farrell

Education Officer

Richard III Society


Zoom presentation 26 March 2022

We are delighted to announce that March’s Zoom presentation will be given by Dr Euan Roger, Principal Medieval Specialist at the National Archives. As always, this event will be free to Society members but please note that we are restricted to a total of 150 places.

Subject: Henry VI, Readeption and Revenge.

Time: 14:00 (GMT)

Date: Saturday 26 March 2022

On the evening of 21 May 1471, Henry VI died in the Tower of London at the age of 49, almost certainly murdered by his Yorkist rivals; a victim of the brutal civil war which we know today as the Wars of the Roses.

A pious, shy man, almost entirely uninterested in war, Henry VI had spent much of the previous decade on the run or imprisoned in the Tower of London, with his family in exile in France, having been deposed by Edward IV in 1461. But after the remarkable events of the ‘Readeption’ in 1470-1, in which Henry had reclaimed his throne and royal power with the aid of Edward’s former allies and brother, he could no longer be allowed to live.

In this talk, Dr Euan Roger of The National Archives will explore Henry’s life and death, focusing in particular on his final decades, from his deposition in 1461 through to the events of the ‘Readeption’ and the circumstances around his death in 1471. Euan will also examine the ‘afterlife’ and manipulation of Henry’s body after 1471, as the king’s legacy was revived with a posthumous cult, a succession of miracles attributed to the late king’s intervention, and a campaign for the Henry’s canonisation.

Dr Euan Roger is a Principal Medieval Specialist at The National Archives, specialising in late medieval and early Tudor English government, the central law courts, and the secular clergy.

Euan has published articles on the Readeption parliament of 1470/1, and recently on quarantine and social distancing in pre-modern England, and his work has featured in publications including TIME Magazine, The Guardian and . He is currently working on a major exhibition at The National Archives on the history of Treason in England.

As before, this event will be free to Society members but please note that we are restricted to a total of 150 places. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt. If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.


Volunteer: Business and Distribution Manager

The Society is seeking applications from members to fill the role of Business and Distribution Manager. A member of the Ricardian Bulletin Committee, the Business Manager is responsible for overseeing the Bulletin’s printing and distribution, liaising with the printer and distributor and the Society’s Membership Officer to support the timely production of the magazine and its delivery to members. The Business Manager monitors the production schedule and manages the costings of each issue. They may also be responsible to the Board for the production of other Society print items, such as the annual report and membership leaflets, as required from time to time. To register your interest in this post, or for further information, please contact Stephen York.


Mike Ingram

It is with great sadness that we have learned of the untimely passing of Mike Ingram. Many members will be aware of Mike’s contribution to the understanding of the military history of the Wars of the Roses, and of the Battle of Bosworth in particular. As Chair of the Northampton Battlefields Society, Mike was a passionate champion of Northampton, the wider county, and it's incredible history. A wonderful public speaker whose interest in his chosen topics always made him a pleasure to listen to, Mike leaves behind a body of work and many precious memories for which we will always remain grateful. Alongside maintaining a reputation as a wonderful historian, Mike was a great friend. We will miss bumping into him at events, and talking to him about shared passions, and theories. The world of history has lost a fine champion, and many of us have lost a good friend.

The Board of the Richard III Society


December Bulletin booking form

We have been informed that not everyone has received the blue insert sheets with their latest Ricardian Bulletin with information on how to attend the Branch Study Days. For anyone wishing to attend, the contact information is as follows:

 • Norfolk Branch joint Study Day with the Battlefields Trust, 'Where They Fought' on Saturday 12th March 2022, please email Annmarie Hayek.

 • Leicestershire Branch Study Day, 'The Dig - Ten Years On' on Saturday 7th May 2022, please email Sally Henshaw.

 • Gloucester and Bristol Branch Study Day, 'The Golden Fleece - The Wool and Cloth Trade in the Medieval Cotswolds' on Saturday 28th May 2022, please email Angela Iliff.

These events are for members only, therefore please include your membership number when contacting the Study Day organisers. We are sorry for any inconvenience caused.


Volunteer for the Society: Chief Copy Editor required

We recently wrote to you about a vacancy for a technical editor of the Ricardian Bulletin following the retirement of Stephen York. Unfortunately, we were unable to fill the vacancy and we have consequently re-assessed the role and the editorial processes for producing the Bulletin.

Consequently, we are now looking for a Chief Copy Editor whose job will be to copy edit the text looking for errors of grammar, spelling and typos and checking for and adherence to the Bulletin house style as well as attention to all headings, captions, page numbers, etc. It is envisaged this will take approximately three to four days for each edition.

The role, which is a voluntary one, requires basic computer literacy and ideally a knowledge of the software package Adobe Acrobat Pro. Ideally, the Chief Copy Editor would have some experience of editing and proofing in publishing or corporate communications.

For more information or to express an interest in the role please email the Society Secretary.

Ricardian Bulletin Committee

Richard III Society


Leicester Cathedral - coffin pall display and hard hat tours

The King Richard III Visitor Centre (opposite the Cathedral) will display the coffin pall created for the reburial of King Richard III, which would normally be on display in the Cathedral, and show video footage of the tomb of King Richard.

A programme of hard hat tours to look at the archaeology and key aspects of the conservation works, and also view the tomb of King Richard will be arranged during 2022. These will be advertised in advance at the Cathedral website, dependent on the access available at various stages of building works.


Zoom presentation 11 February 2022

We are delighted to announce that February’s Zoom presentation will be given by Joanna Laynesmith. As always, this event will be free to Society members but please note that we are restricted to a total of 150 places.

Subject: The Unsung Heroines of the Wars of the Roses.

Time: 14:00 (GMT)

Date: Friday 11 February 2022

Evil queens, helpless pawns and even witches: these are the women who appear in most versions of the Wars of the Roses. Yet there were dozens of women who played their part courageously in the politics of this turbulent age. This talk will share stories of women whose roles have been written out of the history books.

Dr J L Laynesmith is a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Reading and former Research Officer of the Richard III Society. Her publications include The Last Medieval Queens (joint winner of the Longman-History Today Book of the Year) and Cecily Duchess of York (winner of the Royal Studies Book Prize).

We can now accommodate up to 150 members at each event. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt. If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.


KS3 teachers wanted for Richard III project

I would like to reach out to teachers of children aged 11-14 to discuss a project based on the early life of Richard, duke of Gloucester which will satisfy criteria at Key Stage 3 in the History National Curriculum for England. The intention is to develop one or more introductory lesson plans on his life and times and then invite children to use these as stimuli for a creative project. My personal teaching experience is wholly with KS4 and 5, hence my request for help from professionals with the relevant KS3 expertise. If you are able to help, please contact Iain Farrell.

Iain Farrell
Education Officer.


Leicester Cathedral temporary closure from Jan 2022

Leicester Cathedral have informed us that they will be closed to the public from 3rd January 2022 when they hand over the site to their contractors in order for their new Heritage Learning Centre to be built. It is expected that the centre will open in early 2024. Obviously this will impact anyone wishing to visit King Richard's tomb. The Cathedral have said that they would love to welcome as many Ricardians as possible for a last visit before the closure: opening times. It is hoped that the Cathedral will reopen to the public on 29th September 2023, with their education centre opening in early 2024.

The Board of the Richard III Society.


Gold book found near York

A small gold book has been discovered by a metal detectorist near York, on land near a property once owned by Richard III. The piece, measuring just 1.5cm long, was found by Buffy Bailey whilst out metal detecting with her husband, and is believed to be from the late medieval period.
The similarities to the Middleham Jewel are striking,’ said Matt Lewis, Chair of the Richard III Society. ‘The possibility that it belonged to the same family, perhaps the same person, make it even more intriguing.
This is an exciting discovery and an exquisite addition to our tangible links of our medieval past. We will look forward to further study of the object and the stories it will be able to tell us of its past, and ours.


Zoom presentation 22 January 2022 ** Now fully booked **

We are delighted to announce that January’s Zoom presentation will be given by Joe Robey. As previously, the event is free to members.

Subject: The World of Richard III

Time: 14:00 (GMT)

Date: Saturday 22 January 2022

Joe’s presentation will focus on the historical events that occurred during the 15th century beyond the shores of Richard’s England. He will cast a wide net over the period including events in 15th century Central and Eastern Europe and Russia, and China, Japan and India. From civil wars to religious revolution, this century was a tumultuous one where the events that took place would change the course of history forever.
Joe conceived the idea for his presentation when he was working as an interpreter at the Richard III Visitor Centre in Leicester and wanted to bring the events in England during Richard’s time into context for overseas visitors.
'History With Joe' is a living history company based in Leicester that delivers talks, workshops, lectures and interpretation days to a variety of audiences. He has given talks as the Sword Master at the Richard III Visitor Centre in Leicester where visitors gain hands-on experience of medieval swords and can find out just how heavy a battle sword is, and the strength needed to go into battle.

We can now accommodate up to 150 members at each event. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt. If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.


Gretel Jones and Pauline Pogmore Harrison

It is with deepest regret that we have to share the unhappy news of the passing of Gretel Jones and Pauline Pogmore Harrison. Gretel had only recently stepped down from the Board and from her role as Secretary to the Richard III and Yorkist History Trust, after many years of dedicated service. Pauline was a stalwart of the Society and was for many years the Secretary of the Yorkshire Branch. In 2016 she was presented with the Robert Hamblin Award for her years of loyal service to the Society and the Ricardian cause. We send our deepest condolences to Gretel's and Pauline's family and friends. They will both be greatly missed.

The Board of the Richard III Society


2022 Richard III essay prize

The Richard III Society is once again offering a prize of £200 for the best essay from sixth form students on a topic relevant to 'The Life and Times of Richard, Duke of Gloucester (Richard III) 1452-85'. There will be a second prize of £100 and a third prize of £50.

We are open to receiving entries in the format of NEAs, EPQs or closely similar, well-researched and referenced essays of between 3,000 and 5,000 words by a student under the age of 19. Essays may be submitted on any date up to and including 31st May 2022.

The broad topic may be interpreted to include discussion of questions about the political influence of contemporaneous individuals; social conditions in England in the second half of the 15th century; international relationships with European powers under either Yorkist king; marriage policies of monarchs and the nobility and so on. Suggestions may be found on our education website

Essays may be submitted on any date up to and including 31st May 2022, whatever the government’s decision about alternative A level assessments. The judges will be a panel of published authors on 15th century history. Prize winners will be notified by 30th September 2022.

Entrants must be under the age of 19 by 1st September 2022. Please email as below to receive details of how to send an entry.

Rules of the competition can be found on the Wars of the Roses education site:

Iain Farrell
Education Officer
Richard III Society


Zoom presentation December 2021

We are delighted to announce that this presentation will be given by Patrick Parsons. As previously, the event is free to members.

Subject: Richard III and the Mask of Command

Time: 14:00 (GMT)

Date: Friday 10 December 2021

Patrick is currently a Tutor of History in the Centre for Lifelong Learning, University of Strathclyde. He is a graduate the University of Glasgow in History but also studied Archaeology and undertook his postgraduate studies in Early Medieval History at the University of York. Patrick describes below the theme of his presentation:

Illustration from John Lydgate’s
Troy Book and Siege of Thebes (c.1457-62)
Royal MS 18 D.ii.f66v (depicting the slaying of Patroclus
by Hector), accessible via the British Library Website.

‘I will stand the hazard of the die’: Richard III and the Mask of Command

War made Richard, and Richard made war. While by no means a neglected part of his life, I hope to offer some reflections on Richard III as a military leader and on how recent scholarship on medieval warfare and chivalric culture, and the re-discoveries of the battlefield of Bosworth and King’s body, might change our perception of his military career and his abilities. Inspired by John Keegan’s classic grand narrative of heroic generalship, The Mask of Command (1987), I will focus on the three key aspects of Richard’s military life: his training for war (the shaping of the Richard’s body), his experience of large-scale military expeditions (the Scottish war 1480-82), and his conduct and behaviour at Bosworth (his sole independent battlefield command). The aim is to highlight the ways in which the contemporary martial ethos, expectations and practice of war served to shape Richard’s chivalric ‘Mask of Command’

We can now accommodate up to 150 members at each event. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt.

If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.


The Lost King - first image

Pathé today released the first image from The Lost King, starring Oscar nominee and Golden Globe winning actress Sally Hawkins (The Shape of Water, Blue Jasmine, Happy-Go-Lucky) in the lead role of Philippa Langley. Joining Sally Hawkins are Steve Coogan (Stan & Ollie, Philomena) in the role of Philippa’s husband, John Langley; and Harry Lloyd in the role of Richard III.

The film reunites the Oscar nominated and BAFTA winning creative team behind box office and critical hit, Philomena – director Stephen Frears and writers Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope.

The Lost King tells the remarkable true story of how one ‘ordinary’ woman discovered the long-lost remains of King Richard III. The film recently finished shooting in Edinburgh and Leicester and will be released in cinemas nationwide next year, the 10th anniversary of the discovery.

In 2012, having been lost for over 500 years, the remains of King Richard III were discovered beneath a carpark in Leicester. The search had been orchestrated by an amateur historian,

Philippa Langley, whose unrelenting research had been met with incomprehension by her friends and family and with scepticism by experts and academics. THE LOST KING is the life-affirming true story of a woman who refused to be ignored and who took on the country's most eminent historians, forcing them to think again about one of the most infamous kings in England's history.

The film is produced by Steve Coogan, Christine Langan (The Queen) and Dan Winch (A Very English Scandal) and is a Baby Cow production for Pathé, BBC Film, Ingenious Media and Screen Scotland. Executive Producers are Cameron McCracken and Jenny Borgars for Pathé; Rose Garnett for BBC Film; Andrea Scarso for Ingenious; Jeff Pope and Philippa Langley. The film was co-produced by Wendy Griffin.


Battle of Barnet 550th anniversary exhibition

The Barnet Museum is holding an exhibition commemorating the 550th anniversary of the Battle of Barnet. This festival was originally scheduled for April this year. A range of interesting exhibits, such as a wax impression from the seal of Warwick ‘the Kingmaker’ and its engraved matrix, said to have been taken from his body after the battle, as well as loans from the British Museum will sit alongside replica heraldic banners – some of which will also bedeck Barnet High Street.


Left to right: Wax impression from the seal of Warwick ‘the Kingmaker’ and its engraved matrix, said to have been taken from his body after the battle. Examples of four military arrowheads. (All loans from the British Museum). Other finds include an Edward IV groat – datable to 1468. Background is a copy of a number of letters from Warwick and his associates to Henry Vernon of Haddon Hall, Derbyshire, requesting his aid against the ‘rebel and traitor’ (Edward IV) with his hastily added postscript that he should ‘Fail not as ever I may do for you’ (arrowed) and his signature ‘R. Warrewyk’.

Other images are from the temporary exhibition at ‘The Spires Shopping Centre’, High Barnet, which features the latest additional heraldic banners of the participants, displays of other relevant material and facsimiles of a series of paintings on the battle and aftermath by local artist, Keith West.

The banners in Barnet High Street will be displayed until after this year’s delayed Medieval Festival which will take place on the weekend of 11 & 12 September at the Barnet Elizabethans Rugby Football Ground, Byng Road, Barnet EN5 4NP


The Fog of War

There will also be a production of a new play entitled The Fog of War based on the Battle of Barnet. This is being performed on the weekend of 18 & 19 September. Details of The Fog of War and the other events can be obtained from:

Barnet Museum - 31 Wood Street, Barnet, EN5 4BE.

t: 020 8440 8066 - during opening hours only




Twitter: @MuseumBarnet

Opening hours: Tuesday-Thursday 2.30-4.30pm; Saturday 10.30-4pm; Sunday 2.30-4.30pm.

Admission free. Group visits are available by appointment.


Bosworth rose laying ceremony

The rose laying ceremony at Bosworth on Sunday 22nd August is now at 11.30am rather than at 11am as previously stated. Matthew Lewis, the Society Chairman, will represent the Society at the ceremony this year.


Society Members' survey 2021

The Board of the Richard III Society is carrying out a member survey, which will inform the Board’s strategic planning. Results will be reported in the December Bulletin and, if possible, at the October 2021 AGM. Members are being sent a printed copy of the survey or, if they have signed up for RIII Mailings, a link to the online version of the survey. Please watch for it and respond by 31 August.

The Board of the Richard III Society.


The Battle of Bosworth Commemorations 2021

To commemorate the 536th anniversary of the Battle of Bosworth there will be a mixed programme of on-line and in person events from Monday August 16th to Sunday August 22nd at the Battle of Bosworth Heritage Centre.

On Saturday 21 August and Sunday 22 August there will be a living history camp with timed displays. There will also be costumed family guided walks and jester shows.

The Richard III Society and the Battlefields Trust will have stalls on both the Saturday and Sunday from 10.00 am – 4.00 pm.

On Sunday 22 August at 11.00 am Matthew Lewis the Society Chairman will represent the Society at the Battle of Bosworth Memorial Rose laying Ceremony.

For more details see Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre.

St. James’ Church at Sutton Church will not be holding a memorial service this year but will be open to visitors over the weekend of 21-22 August.

There will be a service at Leicester Cathedral at 3.00 pm on Sunday 22 August to commemorate the Battle of Bosworth. There will be the usual procession with banners and the Society Chairman, Matthew Lewis will lay the wreath at the tomb of King Richard III during the service.


Interim Events Coordinator

The position of Events Coordinator is currently vacant. Whilst applications are sought for the permanent position, the Society is seeking urgent interim support with the planning of our forthcoming AGM and Members' Day. Use of a computer/printer and familiarity with Microsoft Word and Excel are required. A full handover will be provided. If you have events experience, or strong administrative/planning skills, and are willing to help, we would like to hear from you. Please contact the Secretary, Susan Ollier as soon as possible.

The Board of the Richard III Society


Announcement of the 2021 Richard II Essay prize for schools

The winner is Georgia Tym, from Tormead School for her essay entitled 'To what extent was Margaret of Anjou responsible for the downfall of Henry VI in 1461?'

The judges commented: 'Georgia had assembled a good range of primary sources demonstrating a good understanding of the period, the sources and the historians, and her essay contained some impressive thoughts and analysis. It would be a good first year essay at university.'

The Chair of the Society, Matthew Lewis, commented: 'Very insightful and balanced'.

Georgia wins a cash prize of £200, one year's free student membership of the Society, and a signed copy of one of Matthew Lewis's books.

Congratulations Georgia!


Society Zoom Presentation 25 September ** Now fully booked **

We are delighted to announce that our September Zoom presentation will be given by Annette Carson. As previously, the event is free to members.

Subject: The Mysterious Affair at Stony Stratford

Time: 14:00 (BST) International members please note that this is British Summer Time, one hour ahead of GMT.

Date: Saturday 25 September 2021

Annette Carson, who has recently published her new edition of Domenico Mancini's de occupatione regni Anglie, has reviewed Mancini's account of Richard's actions on 29th-30th April at Northampton and Stony Stratford. Why did Earl Rivers want the new boy-king, Edward V, to ignore the planned rendezvous with Richard? What were the unintended consequences of the Woodville-dominated Council's actions in London? And what kind of catalyst was the presence of Richard Grey? '(Carson's) sense of immediacy, of living history, is remarkable.'

We can now accommodate up to 150 members at each event. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt.

If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.

We are very interested in member feedback regarding our new Zoom events. Are they enjoyable? Are there specific topics you would like to see as part of the series in the future? Please let me know.

Susan Ollier
Society Secretary


Robert Hamblin Award for Service to the Richard III Society

Nominations for the 2020 Robert Hamblin Award, which was established in 2002 as a means of recognising members who have given significant long term service and made a contribution of particular merit to the work of the Richard III Society, are now being sought. The closing date for nominations is 1st August 2021. As a reminder, nominations must include full details of the nominee, the reasons why you think they qualify for the award and any relevant background information about them and their contribution to the Richard III Society. You should also include your own membership number. Nominations should be sent to the Secretary, Susan Ollier, by email (or letter to the address here). The final selection will be made by the Board and the recipient will be announced at this year's AGM on 2 October 2021.

The Board of the Richard III Society


Society Summer 20201 Zoom Presentations ** Now fully booked **

We are delighted to announce that we have two extremely interesting events to look forward to over the summer. As previously, both events will be free to Society members but please note that, although we have increased the number of places available for attendees, places are still restricted and you will need to register for these events.


July 2021

For our July event, we are delighted to welcome Carol Southworth to present Margaret Beaufort – Saintly Mother or Scheming Dynast?

Painting by Meynnart Wewyck (c 1502 -1525)
St. John’s College Cambridge.
Margaret Beaufort, despite recent studies, remains an enigmatic character, whose exact role in the politics of the late Fifteenth Century remains impossible to discover with any certainty. The image presented in the surviving portraits suggests she wished to be remembered for her piety and good works, but the evidence suggests this is far too simple a conclusion. Despite her own doubtful lineage, she not only saw her son established on the throne but lived just long enough to witness the peaceful accession of her grandson. This talk will examine her life, political actions and influence, with particular reference to one religious establishment which might serve as an indication of her wider reach.

Subject: Margaret Beaufort – Saintly Mother or Scheming Dynast?

Presenter: Carol Southworth

Time: 14:00 (BST) International members please note that this is British Summer Time, one hour ahead of GMT.

Date: Saturday 17 July 2021


August 2021

Antiquarian print of Anthony Wydevile
presenting a book to Edward IV.
Our next event will be in August and will be presented by Lynda Pidgeon, focussing on The Wydeviles.

To quote Keith Dockray writing in 1999, the Wydeviles, have ‘long had a most unsavoury reputation as a family of grasping upstarts who single-mindedly exploited their connections with the crown …’. This talk will review the evidence for this assessment and look at the propaganda which was used against them.

Subject: The Wydeviles

Presenter: Lynda Pidgeon

Time: 14:00 (BST) International members please note that this is British Summer Time, one hour ahead of GMT.

Date: Thursday 19 August 2021


Following a recent Zoom upgrade we can now accommodate up to 150 members at each event. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt.

If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.

We are very interested in member feedback regarding our new Zoom events. Are they enjoyable? Are there specific topics you would like to see as part of the series in the future? Please let me know.

Susan Ollier
Society Secretary


Society Zoom Presentation 19 June 2021 ** Now fully booked **

We are pleased to welcome Annie Garthwaite as our guest speaker. As previously, the event will be free to Society members


Subject: Cecily Neville - Mother, Wife, Traitor, Survivor

Time: 14:00 (BST) International members please note that this is British Summer Time, one hour ahead of GMT.

Date: Saturday 19 June 2021


Cecily Neville, the protagonist in Annie Garthwaite's debut novel Cecily was born in the year of Agincourt, lived into the early years of the Tudors, created a dynasty, mothered Edward IV and Richard III and led her family through civil war. For most of her life she was one of the most powerful women in England, second only to queens. Reading from her novel, Annie will reveal Cecily in all her complex glory: A dynastic schemer and a political mover and shaker of the first rank; a strategist, politician and administrator par excellence. But also, a wife and mother, who loved fiercely, lost children in infancy and to war and, one fateful day, faced down an army alone.

Annie will describe how she came to write Cecily's story and talk about what makes Richard's mother the most compelling matriarch of the 15th century - and a woman for all time.

Following a recent Zoom upgrade we can now accommodate up to 150 members at each event. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt.

If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.

We are very interested in member feedback regarding our new Zoom events. Are they enjoyable? Are there specific topics you would like to see as part of the series in the future? Please let me know.

Susan Ollier
Society Secretary


Royal Mail Wars of the Roses stamps

The Royal Mail are releasing a set of stamps commemorating the Wars of the Roses, featuring the wonderful paintings of Graham Turner.

Buckingham Covers are now offering sets of first day covers of these stamps. For each set they sell from this dedicated link, the Richard III Society will receive a commission, thereby enabling buyers to support the work of the Society.


Society Shop postage charges

Please note that following a significant increase in US postal charges, all p&p rates for individual sales items have been updated. A new sales catalogue has been posted on-line and members are urged to check the p&p rates before completing their sales orders. If you are unable to do this, please contact E-Mediacy (contact details on the inside back cover of all Bulletins) who will confirm the correct charge. A new sales catalogue will be included with the September Bulletin.


Society Zoom Presentation 15 May 2021

We are delighted to announce that our May 2021 Zoom event presentation will be given by our Chairman, Matt Lewis. As previously, the event will be free to Society members but please note that we are restricted to a total of 147 places, plus the Speaker, Zoom host and Chair.


Subject: The Foreign Policy of Edward IV and Richard III by Matt Lewis

Time: 14:00 (BST) International members please note that this is British Summer Time, one hour ahead of GMT.

Date: 15 May 2021


To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt.

If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.

We are very interested in member feedback regarding our new Zoom events. Are they enjoyable? Are there specific topics you would like to see as part of the series in the future? Please let me know.

Susan Ollier
Society Secretary


Zoom lectures - places available

Due to cancellations there are still some places available on the following Zoom lectures:

Topic: 'The The Barber Surgeon'

Speaker: Christina Smee

Date: Thursday 18 March 2021

Time: 2.00pm GMT


Topic: 'The Walled Up Woman' a one woman play about the life of an anchoress

Speaker: Georgina Lock

Date: Saturday 24 April 2021

Time: 2.00pm British Summer Time


If you would like to reserve a place at either of these lectures please email Julia Langham, the Event Administrator with your Society membership number and country of residence if you're outside the UK, and which Zoom call you'd like to attend.


Richard III and Yorkist History Trust Book Sale

Special sale prices on a select range of books published by the Richard III and Yorkist History Trust are available for a limited time only. Order enquiries should be directed to Shaun Tyas Publishing directly and not to the Richard III Society.


Annual General Meeting

As members will know, the postponed AGM of the Society and of the Limited Company will take place on Saturday 20 February, commencing at 15:00 GMT.

The meeting is being held entirely by Zoom and the link for the meeting has been sent to members via the RIII mailings.

Any members not yet registered on the RIII Mailings list can e-mail the Society's Web Content Manager by Friday 19th February to be added to the mailing list.


Tewkesbury Festival announcement

We have been informed by the organisers that The Tewkesbury Medieval Festival has unfortunately been cancelled for this year. The organisers were facing a long list of potential problems, including the strong possibility that the event would be stopped at short notice due to COVID regulations.

This is a huge disappointment as 2021 was to be a big year and one for which planning had started five years ago.

We are advised that all that remains of the packed programme commemorating 550 years since the Battle and 900 since the consecration of the Abbey is a Son et Lumière, which has been put back to November 2021.


Prize Essay for Sixth Formers 2021 — update

The Richard III Society is offering a prize of £200 for the best essay on a topic relevant to 'The Life and Times of Richard, Duke of Gloucester (Richard III) 1452-85'.

There will be second prize of £100 and a third prize of £50. All entries judged to be of at least 'grade A' quality will qualify for one year’s free membership of The Richard III Society.

Given the uncertainties about UK Summer 2021 assessments, we are open to receiving entries in the format of NEAs, EPQs or closely similar, well-researched and referenced essays of between 3,000 and 5,000 words by a student under the age of 19.

The broad topic may be interpreted to include discussion of questions about the political influence of other contemporaneous individuals; social conditions in England in the second half of the 15th century; international relationships with European powers under either Yorkist king; marriage policies of monarchs and the nobility and so on.

Essays may be submitted on any date up to and including 31st May, whatever the government’s decision about alternative assessments.

Please e-mail as below to notify us that you intend to submit an entry and to receive details of how to send your entry in. The judges will be a panel of published authors on 15th century history. Entrants must be under the age of 19 by 1st September 2021 and attending a school or college in the United Kingdom. Prize winners will be notified by September 30th, 2021.

Iain Farrell
Education Officer


Society Zoom Presentation 24 April 2021

The fourth in our regular series of Zoom events will be on Saturday 24th April 2021. As before, this event will be free to Society members.

Unusually, this will be a one woman play and promises to be a very different experience from our usual lectures. The Walled Up Woman is a timely solo show written and performed by Georgina Lock, who is a writer and actress based in East Suffolk England.

Zoom in on the joys and conflicts of an anchoress, one of many who, throughout the Middle Ages, chose prayer, fasting and lone lockdown in a church lean to for life. As there is evidence that Richard III confirmed a grant of an annuity to "the anchoress of Westminster", the play will give us a window on an aspect of religion that he appreciated

Subject: The Walled Up Woman by Georgina Lock

Time: 14:00 (GMT)

Date: 24 April 2021

"If anything works on Zoom this does. So compelling." Judith Still, Emeritus professor of French, Nottingham University.

Following a recent Zoom upgrade we can now accommodate up 150 members at each event, including the Presenter, Zoom host and meeting Chair. To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt.

If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.

We are very interested in member feedback regarding our new Zoom events. Are they enjoyable? Are there specific topics you would like to see as part of the series in the future? Please let me know.

Susan Ollier
Society Secretary


Society Zoom Presentation 18 March 2021

The third in our regular series of Zoom lectures will be given on Thursday 18 March 2021. As before, this event will be free to Society members.

We are delighted to announce that this presentation will be given by Christina Smee.

Subject: The Barber Surgeon

Time: 14:00 (GMT)

Date: 18 March 2021

To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt.

If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.

Susan Ollier
Society Secretary


AGM 2020/21 notice

The postponed 2020 Annual General Meetings of the unincorporated Society and of the new Limited Company will be held on Saturday 20 February 2021, starting at 15:00 GMT.

Due to current restrictions in the UK, the AGMs will be held online via Zoom. The link for the Zoom meeting will be sent to those on the RIII mailings list.

To go on the mailing list please write to our Web Content Manager with your membership number and confirmation of the e-mail address you would like us to use. Please also confirm whether or not you would like to remain on the mailing list after the AGM.

AGM papers are being mailed to members in mid-January, including voting papers for motions and the elections for board directors and Executive Committee members. Voting will be managed by Civica (formerly Electoral Reform Services) and can be by post or online.

John Whiting, Acting Chairman and Treasurer


Phil Stone

We have previously advised members of the sad news that our Chairman, Dr Phil Stone, passed away shortly before Christmas. The funeral will be held on Thursday 21 January at 2.45pm. The Society will be represented though it will be appreciated attendance at the funeral is extremely limited. There will be a live stream of the service (available for a further 28 days) for which we will send out the link.

The family have requested that no flowers are sent please; donations to MacMillan Cancer.


Editor: Ricardian Bulletin

This key Society role, which has been advertised previously, is still vacant. After further discussion about the amount and nature of the work required, the EC/Board has determined the role should become a paid one. We are therefore re-advertising it on that basis.

The post holder, with the support of the Bulletin Committee, will be responsible for planning and sourcing the magazine’s content. He or she will also take a lead role in the ongoing development of its style and content to meet the needs of the membership and the aims of the Society. The role and shape of the Bulletin Committee are currently under review and the Editor will play a major part in determining its future. The Editor’s role will require a commitment of up to 300 hours a year, much of it concentrating in the four weeks preceding each quarterly issue. Remuneration will be determined by negotiation with the candidates.

Applicants should have relevant experience and candidates will be invited to an interview with EC/Board members, conducted by Zoom. It is envisaged that the successful candidate will join the Bulletin team during the production cycle of the March 2021 Bulletin and take over the editorship at the beginning of the production cycle of the June edition.

For further information and to express an interest please e-mail the Society's secretary by 15 January 2021.


Fotheringhay Christmas 2020

As you are all aware, thanks to the pandemic, we are unable to hold our usual gathering at Fotheringhay with lunch and a carol service.

We cannot provide you with the lunch but we can offer a virtual form of the carol service. As far as possible, this will follow the usual pattern with the choir providing suitable music, including pieces from their CD, accompanied by appropriate images. The readings have been recorded by members of the Society and members of the choir.

The St Peter’s Singers and the Board of the Society invite you to join the service, most probably on YouTube, which will be premiered on Saturday 19th December at 3pm

It will then be available until the 2nd January 2021, after which it will be withdrawn. Further details, including an order-of-service, will become available nearer the time, possibly three or four days before the service goes on-line.

For those who don’t wish to watch this but who do want to hear this wonderful choir, the CD is available from the Sales Department - details in the Bulletin.


Society Essay Prize for Sixth formers – extended deadline

We have received some notifications of entries for this new essay prize and have capacity for more so we are happy to receive notifications to submit essays to stating the student’s name, their school or college name and the proposed essay title, up to the end of January 2021 for submission in the summer of 2021.

So far all the essay titles notified focus on Richard III, but we also welcome titles which focus on his brothers or his parents or other significant personalities such as Margaret Beaufort or Henry Stafford and their relationships with Richard. Broader themes such as the relationship between Church and state, international relations, legitimacy and kingship are all acceptable.

Iain Farrell, Education Officer


Society Zoom Presentation 5 February 2021

The second in our regular series of Zoom lectures will be given on Friday 5th February 2021. As before, this event will be free to Society members but please note that we are restricted to a total of 97 places, plus the Speaker, Zoom host and Chair.

We are delighted to announce that this presentation will be given by Yvonne Morley-Chisholm of the 'A Voice for Richard' project.

Subject: A Voice for Richard

Time: 14:00 (GMT)

Date: 5 February 2021

To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, email address, membership number and country (if outside the UK) as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt.

If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.

PLEASE NOTE: The talk by Matt Lewis on Sunday 6th December 2020 is now fully booked and waitlisted. No further enquiries for this one please.

Susan Ollier
Society Secretary


Society Education Website Goes Live

The Society’s long-awaited education website on the life and times of Richard III, entitled ‘Wars of the Roses’ is now live. The website has been developed by Iain Farrell the Society’s Education Officer with the support of the Society’s Research Officer, Joanna Laynesmith.

The content of the website has been guided by the needs of teachers and exam providers to develop in pupils and students the critical analysis of sources and differing interpretations to reach a considered view of events in the distant past. To that end the website does not take a strongly partisan line in providing information about Richard III. The primary objective is to stimulate readers to find out more for themselves. To engage with young people the site includes many images and links to podcasts and videos.

The focus to date has been to provide information on the Wars of the Roses for students of A level History. However, following a request from teachers, the website also includes background on the 15th century, most of which so far is aimed at younger readers. In order to build up content for each age group and to keep the site lively Iain would be very grateful to receive input from any current or retired teachers. Iain can be contacted by email at

Please take time to visit the education website and to explore and enjoy our new resource.


Society Zoom Presentation 6 December 2020 **fully booked**

Following the success of the Zoom presentation given by James Wright on what would have been this year’s Members’ Day, the Society is commissioning a new series of presentations, to be delivered via Zoom and with diverse speakers covering a variety of topics. The first of the series will be given on Sunday 6th December. As before, this event will be free to Society members but please note that we are restricted to a total of 97 places, plus the Speaker, Zoom host and Chair.

We are delighted to announce that the first presentation will be given by Matt Lewis.

Subject: The Survival of the Princes

Time: 14:30 (GMT)

Date: 6 December 2020

To attend you will need to be online, and have an email address, so that you can be sent the invitation to join the Zoom meeting. If you wish to attend, please send your name, e-mail address and membership number as soon as possible to the event administrator, Julia Langham. Bookings will be registered in order of receipt.

If you are not a Society member and are interested in joining, please see our membership rates and benefits. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible for another stimulating afternoon.

Susan Ollier
Society Secretary


Society Education Website Goes Live

he Society’s long-awaited education website on the life and times of Richard III, entitled ‘Wars of the Roses’ is now live. The website has been developed by Iain Farrell, the Society’s Education Officer, with the support of the Society’s Research Officer, Joanna Laynesmith.

The content of the website has been guided by the needs of teachers and exam providers to develop in pupils and students the critical analysis of sources and differing interpretations to reach a considered view of events in the distant past.


Society Zoom Presentation 6 December 2020

Following the success of the Zoom presentation given by James Wright on what would have been this year’s Members’ Day, the Society is commissioning a new series of presentations, to be delivered via Zoom and with diverse speakers covering a variety of topics.

The first of the series will be given on Sunday 6 December. As before, this event will be free to Society members but please note that we are restricted to a total of 97 places, plus the Speaker, Zoom host and Chair.

Subject: The Survival of the Princes

Time: 14:30 (GMT)

Date: 6 December 2020


Prize Essay for Sixth Formers 2021

The Richard III Society is offering a prize of £200 for the best essay on a topic relevant to The Life and Times of Richard, Duke of Gloucester (Richard III) 1452-85 submitted either as coursework or an EPQ to an awarding body by the end of May 2021.

There will be second prize of £100 and a third prize of £50. All entries judged to be of at least grade A quality will qualify for one year’s free membership of the Richard III Society.

An intention to submit an essay should be sent by 31st October 2020 to stating the student’s name, their school or college name and the proposed essay title. The judges will be a panel of published authors on 15th century history. The deadline for sending entries will be dependent on the state of play of exams in 2021 and will be posted on the Richard III Society website. This deadline will be no earlier than the end of May 2021. Entrants must be under the age of 19 by 1st September 2021 and attending a school or college in the United Kingdom. Prize winners will be notified by 30th September 2021.

Iain Farrell, Education Officer


Society PayPal account - Resolved

We are pleased to say that the operational issues with the Society's PayPal account ( have been solved and the account is operational again. Apologies to any member who has been inconvenienced by its short suspension. John Whiting, Treasurer


Virtual Bosworth Commemorations

Virtual Bosworth Medieval Festival. Saturday 22 to Sunday 23 August 10.00 am – 5.30 pm GMT

The Bosworth Medieval Festival has been cancelled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. However, to commemorate the 535th anniversary of the battle, there will be a Virtual Festival held on 22nd and 23rd August.

Some of the participants of the Medieval Festival events will be involved, including a contribution from the Richard III Society and a pre-filmed Rose Laying Ceremony. Further details will soon be available here.

Annual Service to mark the death of King Richard III on 22nd August

It will not be possible to hold the usual service in Leicester Cathedral this year to mark the death of King Richard III, but there will be a pre-recorded service instead on 22nd August 22nd at 5.30pm GMT. The order of service will be posted on the Cathedral website and there will be a link to the YouTube service on the day itself. The Dean of Leicester will be leading the service and there will be readings by the High Sheriff of Leicester and Professor Turi King. A short sermon will be delivered by the Rector of Bosworth, The Reverend Mark Poskitt. A wreath will be laid at the tomb during the service. For further information, including the order of service and other links, click here.


Logge and English Wills books offer

The Society will shortly be making digitised versions of these two publications available online. Before doing so, we are delighted to offer hard copies of both at a special price. Both volumes offer fascinating insights into everyday life and society in fifteenth-century England. Please note that all copies of the English Wills have now sold out. For further information about these publications and how to order please click here.


New Education Officer

It is with great pleasure that we announce the appointment of Iain Farrell to the post of Education Officer.

Iain is a retired secondary school teacher and is currently chair of governors of a community school in London. He has also been a schools inspector and is, therefore, fully cognisant with the education system in this country. He has a strong interest in fifteenth century English history and has recently been working with Philippa Langley on the Missing Princes Project, focussing on documents in the National Archives, Kew.

Having done considerable research into the current curricula for all levels of history teaching where the fifteenth century is concerned, Iain’s initial focus will be on producing supporting material for A level and the EPQ.

We wish him well and look forward to an interesting future.

The Board of the Richard III Society, CLG


Cancellation of Study Days

It is with great reluctance that the Leicestershire branch and the Norfolk branch have had to cancel their study days. The Leicestershire event was scheduled for September 26th 2020 and the Norfolk event for November 7th 2020. We do not know if the chosen venues will be open again by then and even if they are, social distancing would be very difficult, if not impossible.

We were not in time to prevent these events being advertised again in the June bulletin, but they have now been cancelled.

We apologise for any inconvenience this causes but feel that everyone’s safety is paramount in these difficult times.

Branches and Groups Coordinator.


Society AGM 2020 cancelled

In these uncertain times it is unclear whether large gatherings will be possible in the foreseeable future. Our intended venue for the 2020 AGM and Members’ day was York and it seems highly unlikely that we would be able to hold these in the way we had planned in accordance with social distancing requirements.To give venue and members plenty of notice, we have therefore reluctantly had to cancel the planned Members’ Day and AGM in early October. To ensure we do not disappoint our members who were looking forward to visiting York, we now plan to hold the 2021 Members’ Day and AGM in York.

In the meantime, we do have a legal responsibility to hold an AGM. However, Companies House has stated that more flexibility on the timing and format of AGMs will be allowed due to the current corona virus situation. Click here to read how the Board proposes moving forward in 2020.

The Board of the Richard III Society

27 May 2020


Inquiry into the conduct of meetings and decision-making processes

The Board of Directors of the Richard III Society has now set up the independent inquiry promised in its last statement to members. Following the resignation of three valued Directors, two of whom were new to the Board, having been elected for the first time at the October 2019 AGM, the inquiry will examine the activities of the Executive Committee/Board in the recent past and its conduct of meetings and decision-making processes.

The full statement and more information.

As we enter a new stage in the existence of the Richard III Society, becoming a legally recognised body for the first time as a Company Limited by Guarantee, the Board welcomes this opportunity to review and strengthen the governance of the Society, while regretting the circumstances that have led to it.

The Board of the Richard III Society

11 May 2020



Matthew Lewis, Education Officer

It is with regret that we have to let members know that Matthew Lewis has resigned from the EC/Board and from his role as Education Officer. We want to record our thanks to Matt for his contribution to the work of the EC/Board during his short tenure, especially for the energy and ideas he brought to the role of Education Officer. This resignation resulted from a principled disagreement, which raised some issues also of concern to others. The EC/Board will now work to address and resolve these concerns. We hope that, in the future, Matt may be able to return to a frontline role within the Society. In the meantime, he will continue to contribute in other ways.

We would welcome hearing from members with an educational background who would be interested in taking forward Matt’s work as Education Officer.

The Executive Committee/Board


Membership re-registration

Following the information in the March Bulletin about the need for all members to re-register their Society membership as we change to a Company Limited by Guarantee, I can now confirm that an explanatory letter and form for re-registration will be sent out to all members in a few days. I would urge everyone to complete and return the form in the pre-paid envelope provided to ensure that your membership continues after September.

Sue Wells

Membership Officer


Stay Safe, Keep in Touch

During these difficult times the Society would like to keep in touch with our members as much as possible. The easiest way we do this on a daily basis is through our various social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram). However, we are very aware that not all of our members can access these accounts. For any members who wish to be involved but don't have social media, we are planning to arrange to email anyone who wants us to every few days with some highlights from our social media pages. These are ranging from the lighthearted (we are currently inviting members to send in photos of their Ricardian pets, because we all need something lighthearted right now) to the more serious (a link to information about the glorious stained glass windows at York Minster). If anyone wishes to receive these emails please contact our Communications Manager, Amanda Geary, and she will be happy to help.


A message from HRH Duke of Gloucester

I have received the following from our Patron’s Private Secretary at Kensington Palace: 'His Royal Highness The Duke of Gloucester has asked me to convey his best wishes to all your members, staff and volunteers while we enter this unprecedented period of uncertainty and worry. He is very much aware of the concerns that your people will have at the moment as this pandemic develops and would want you to know that you are all very much in his mind'.

With all best wishes to you all. Stay safe and stay well.

Dr P T Stone, Chairman


Society events and COVID-19

Everyone will be aware of the present situation relating to the COVID-19 virus and the ever-changing Government restrictions being placed upon us all. Many of us are over 70 and now in some form of purdah or another. This is to let you all know that we will try to keep as much as possible active - The Bulletin and the website especially. Sadly, however, we have had to postpone the Exeter study weekend and most Branches and Groups are cancelling their meetings until further notice. The events in Leicester to commemorate the Fifth Anniversary of King Richard’s Reinterment have been another casualty, of course. I would ask you to remember that members of the Executive Committee as well as Branch and Group organisers are all volunteers and they are all doing their best to stay on top of things in a difficult and rapidly changing situation. I wish you all well and ask you all to stay safe. Let us get rid of this damned disease as quickly as possible so that life may return to normal again.

With the very best of wishes.

Dr P T Stone, Chairman


Re-internment Events cancelled

All events at Leicester Cathedral and the Visitor Centre for the weekend of 27 - 29 March 2020 have been cancelled following government advice. Members who had booked for Christian Steer’s talk on Friday 27 March will have their money refunded by the Visitor Centre. The cathedral hopes to be able to reschedule events at a later date. Please refer to their website for further information.


Bosworth battlefield developments

The Richard III Society have recently been made aware of two potential developments which are likely to impact on Bosworth Battlefield.

The first is a proposal to construct a large solar farm on land adjacent to the registered battlefield. Obviously anything that helps promote more renewable energy is to be welcomed, and as this is not actually on the battlefield there are no grounds on which to object. However, we have contacted Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council to request that if this development goes ahead, then a proper archaeological survey is undertaken prior to work commencing. We have also requested adequate screening of the solar farm to limit its impact on the battlefield.

The second development is at Stoke Golding, where Tudor was crowned after the battle. This proposal would see six houses built behind The White Swan pub, a plan which would encroach onto the registered battlefield. As the area has already met its target for building new homes, and none of these proposed houses classify as 'affordable housing', the Society is against this development and have written to Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council.

Obviously, these applications do appear to be a worrying trend, coming just a year after the plans by Horiba Mira to build a driverless car test track on part of the registered battlefield were approved by the council. The Richard III Society hopes to work with our colleagues at the Battlefields Trust and the Henry Tudor Society over the coming year and beyond to try to prevent any further development of this important historic site.


16 December 2019: Gold Half Angel

The Richard III Society was delighted to hear that Buckingham Old Gaol museum has been successful in its fundraising efforts to secure the Richard III half angel coin which was recently discovered locally. The coin will now go on permanent public display at the museum.

The Society donated to the appeal and now looks forward to working with Buckingham Old Gaol museum on the coin's display.

Our Chairman, Dr Phil Stone, said: 'It's great news that the Richard III half angel coin has been purchased by Buckingham Old Gaol and that it will be displayed for all to see rather than going abroad. Coins of this nature and quality are very rare. This is a true triumph for history and heritage and members of the Richard III Society will all look forward to getting the chance to visit the museum when the coin goes on display. Well done Buckingham!'


8-14 September 2020: Plantagenet Heartlands Tour

Led by James Friedenthal

The Croydon Group warmly invite all fellow Ricardians and friends to join us on our trip to Anjou. This is our third adventure and is once again arranged for us by PAX Travel, who will provide us with good local guides.

Our tour will take us to many places associated with the Plantagenets and will culminate in visiting their royal mausoleum at the abbey of Fontevraud.

We shall be based mainly in Tours with visits to Poitiers, Blois, Amboise and Chinon.

We will transfer for the last night to stay at the beautiful L'Abbaye Royal Hotel in the grounds of Fontevraud Abbey, where we shall hold a celebration group dinner.

Seven days, six nights. Transfers and touring by private coach in France. Guided visits and entrance fees appropriate to the itinerary included.

Flights from Stanstead to Tours (ATOL and ABTA financial protection).

Price - £1,059 Single room supplement - £258 (limited availability)

Please contact PAX Travel for full details and a booking form, quoting 'Plantagenet Heartlands Tour' or give James Friedenthal's name.

PAX Travel Ltd, 2nd Floor, 102, Blundell Street, London, N7 9BL

t: 020 7485 3003




5 October 2019: 'Two faces of Fotheringhay' concert

On Saturday 5 October in Fotheringhay Church, York Waits will be performing music from the time of Richard III and of Mary, Queen of Scots. Further information.


31 August 2019: Society Legal Status: Result

The result is a resounding vote in favour of the proposal that the Society becomes a Company Limited by Guarantee. In a turnout of 83.8%,

 • 2,542 members voted for the proposal,

 • 41 voted against and

 • 79 didn't fill their papers.

Under the present Constitution, a two-thirds majority of the votes cast is required to carry the resolution. With 98.4% in favour, this was considerably more than the required two-thirds majority. There will, of course, be a discussion at the AGM of the result and where we go from here. In the meantime the Q&As compiled by the Constitution Working Party about the proposed changes can still be accessed here, with further questions answered here.

The members of the Executive Committee thank the membership for their expression of confidence.


18 August 2019: John Audsley

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of John Audsley on Sunday 18th August. He was 97. A former member of the Yorkshire Branch, until his death, John was for many years a Vice President of the Society. There will be an obituary in the December Bulletin. Meanwhile we extend our condolences to his family and friends.

The Executive Committee.


6 August 2019: Bestwood Lodge commemorative plaque

Following discussions at the Society's AGM last year, the Executive Committee are delighted to announce the first in what we hope will be a series of plaques commemorating events in the life of King Richard. The Society has provided a plaque to be displayed on Bestwood Lodge in Nottingham, commemorating Richard's stay there in August 1485. It was while staying at Bestwood that the king first heard news of Henry Tudor's invasion.

The plaque will be unveiled by our Chairman, Dr Phil Stone, on Monday 19th August at 2.00pm. This is just two days past the 534th anniversary of Richard leaving Bestwood before heading to Bosworth.

Members are very welcome to attend this event — we ask if anyone planning to attend could please let either our Communications Manager, Amanda Geary know, or our Branches and Groups Co-ordinator, Sally Henshaw know so that we have some idea of numbers.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Bestwood Plaque


23 July 2019: 'Easy Sunday' Music at Fotheringhay

In Fotheringhay Church, starting at 3 pm, there is a programme of ‘easy listening’ classical recitals during the months of July and August:

 • 28 July Piano duets - Mainly French

 • 4 Aug Nigel Stark - organ & piano

 • 11 Aug Jill Crossland - piano

 • 25 Aug The Ternion Wind Trio

 • Further recitals in September.

These are not formal recitals. Members of the audience are free to come and go as they wish, all that is asked that they make a donation towards the daily upkeep of the church. Further information can be further information.


23 July 2019: Events in Leicester this August

 • 17-18 Aug: Bosworth Medieval Festival

The annual medieval festival includes two large scale battle re-enactments, jousting and armour mounted skill at arms display, artillery display, and so much more including the Richard III Society Stall! Tickets are available online Tickets are valid for both days, but you need to purchase one for either day. You can also visit the Ticket Office (10.00 am to 5.00 pm) or t: 01455 290429. Price: Adults £17.50, Concession £15.00.

 • 17 Aug, 17.30: Choral Evensong at Leicester Cathedral

This service marks the anniversary of the death of Richard III at the battle of Bosworth. The banners will be carried and white roses laid. For more details

 • 22 Aug, 11:00-11:30: Rose Laying Ceremony

A rose laying ceremony will take place at the Bosworth Sundial Memorial. For more details or t: 01455 290429

 • 22 Aug, 18:30<: Reinterment Relived: The Dean Reflects

On the anniversary of the Battle of Bosworth, David Monteith will offer some reflections on Richard III’s reinterment in March of 2015. Leicester Cathedral at 6.30 pm. Free admission, no booking required.

 • 25 Aug, 13.00-16.00: Open Streets Greyfriars: Richard III

From April to October on the fourth Sunday of each month Leicester has a themed afternoon of cycling aimed at families in the city centre. The theme in August will be King Richard III.

The Leicestershire Branch of the Society will be having a stall at this event in the vicinity of King Richard’s Statue and a talk will be given between 14.00-15.00 at either the Richard III Visitor Centre or the Guildhall. For more information please visit Further details will appear after the July event on July 28th.


23 June 2019: Time for a Final Charge

We have one last chance to reverse the decision made by Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council last year to allow building on part of the registered Bosworth Battlefield. There is a legal possibility to reverse the decision - please help us by signing the petition.

This power — part of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 — can be used at any point until building is complete, so there is still time to get the permission revoked.

If you can, please sign the petition by following this link:

At 10,000 signatures, government will respond to this petition.

At 100,000 signatures, this petition will be considered for debate in Parliament.

Which means the more people that sign, the more chance there is of of saving Bosworth!


14 June 2019: Nominations for the Executive Committee

Nominations are now invited for the Society's Executive Committee. Members wishing to be nominated, must complete the application form, and must be proposed and seconded by members of the Society. The completed form must be returned to the Society Secretary, Susan Ollier, by 1 August 2019.


7 June 2019: Establishing a Legal Status for the Society

All members will know that the Constitution Working Party has been looking into the most effective way to establish a legal status for the Society.

To bring about change, our Constitution requires a member-wide ballot to be conducted. Voting papers together with a reply paid envelope have been distributed to all Members by the Electoral Reform Service.

The Constitution Working Party have complied Q&As about the proposed changes which can be accessed here.

The result of the ballot requires a two thirds majority of those voting for it to be effective.

Members are encouraged to vote and return the ballot paper in good time for the closing date of 22nd August.


8 March 2019: Gift Membership

We are pleased to announce that we have upgraded the Gift Membership presentation pack. This will now be packaged in a smart dark blue box containing all the information and past publications necessary to the new member. It will make a memorable gift. A specific form is available for anyone who wishes to give a gift membership. This can be downloaded from the Society Membership page of the website or obtained from E-Mediacy via e-mail or hard copy in the post. There is a one-off charge of £5.00 to cover the additional costs of the new package.


September 2018: Open Letter to the Planning Committee

The battle of Bosworth was one of the most significant events in English history. It is remarkable for the fact that it featured the final cavalry charge of the last English king to die in battle. This event led to the end of over three hundred years of Plantagenet rule, and the beginning of the Tudor era.

Despite being a Society with a research focus firmly on events of the past, we are in no way opposed to technological progress. It was indeed more recent advances in genetics and DNA fingerprinting which allowed King Richard himself to be identified once his remains were located beneath the Social Services car park in Leicester in 2012. However, we are concerned that something as historically and culturally important as the battlefield, which has a direct relevance to the king now buried in Leicester Cathedral, will be adversely impacted by this development. We appreciate the need to test this new technology but by its nature, and bearing in mind the speed of future technological advances, it is likely to become quickly obsolete, whereas the damage done to the battlefield will be irreparable. We are therefore concerned that the battlefield will be lost for a project which may be important in the short term, but is unlikely to have a significant lasting value across centuries to come. This being the case, surely an alternative site can be found, where our heritage will not be destroyed?

We appeal to the Councillors on the Planning Committee of Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council to listen, not just to us, but to many of the local residents who have recently commented publicly and signed a petition against this development along with other groups who feel as we do and whose work supports important local tourism in the area. Amongst those are the Battlefields Trust, the Richard III Loyal Supporters, the Henry Tudor Society, and the many, many other experts in their fields who hold such strong opinions on this issue they have sent us the statements of support that are included with this letter.

Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council are the custodians of this unique and historically important place. We implore you to make the right decision and protect the battlefield for future generations. Our trust is in you to ensure that the site can be enjoyed in years to come, as it has been over its long and revealing history.


18 January 2019: Rhoda Edwards

The Richard III Society were saddened to hear of the death of Rhoda Edwards, author of the novels Some Touch of Pity and Fortune's Wheel, and the invaluable The Itinerary of King Richard III 1483-1485. Rhoda died on 27th November 2018, and her funeral will be held on Thursday 25th January 2019 at Randalls Park Crematorium, Leatherhead, Surrey. We send our condolences to her family and friends.


25 November 2018: Society Shop new items & Christmas last posting dates

The Society's Sales Catalogue has been updated with new items such as White Rose earrings, Society Mugs, and Middleham and Fotheringhay mousemats - all of which would make lovely gifts for Ricardians everywhere!

Please click on the link at the top of the page to access the new catalogue.

Christmas last posting dates for UK and worldwide orders are:

  • Tuesday 4 December: Africa, Middle East
  • Friday 7 December: Cyprus, Malta, Asia, Far East, Eastern Europe (except Poland, Czech Republic and Slovakia)
  • Saturday 8 December: Caribbean, Central and South America
  • Monday 10 December: Australia, New Zealand
  • Friday 14 December: Canada*, Czech Republic, Italy, Poland and USA
  • Saturday 15 December: Finland, Sweden
  • Monday 17 December: Austria, Denmark, Germany, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland
  • Tuesday 18 December: UK, Belgium, France, Ireland, Luxembourg

* There may be a significant backlog of deliveries to Canada due to industrial action currently taking place in that country. Please factor this in when ordering for delivery to Canada.


10 October 2018: Society Memorial Service Dr John Ashdown‑Hill, 16 Nov 2018

The Society memorial service for the late Dr John Ashdown-Hill will take place at Westminster Cathedral on Friday 16th November at 2.30pm. Society members are invited to attend along with John's family and friends. Please confirm your attendance with the Society Events Co-ordinator Jeanette Melbourne.

Following the service, a reception will be held in the Cathedral hall at 3.30pm, where refreshments will be served. The capacity of the hall is limited, therefore if requests to attend the reception exceed capacity a ballot will be held to ensure fair selection.


12 Sept 2018: Parliamentary debate about Bosworth Battlefield

A debate in Parliament about the protection of Bosworth Battlefield will be held in Westminster Hall on Wednesday 12th September at 4.30pm and will be led by Chris Skidmore MP. Chris states: "The battle site is remarkably well preserved - as recent archaeological investigations have shown, there is still much evidence buried beneath its fields. As the discovery of Richard III's remains under the tarmac of a car park in Leicester demonstrate, our hidden past can unearth remarkable finds. Yet this planning application for a huge driverless car testing track due to be decided on 25th September threatens to tarmac over a historic battlefield - setting a dangerous precedent for battlefields and archaeological heritage across the country that deserves to be protected for future investigation."

Please can we urge our members within the UK to contact their Members of Parliament immediately and ask them to support this debate.

The planning meeting at Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council to decide the fate of this portion of Bosworth Battlefield fast approaches, and Bosworth is in real danger. Once lost, it is lost forever.

Please join with us in making our voices heard!

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26 August 2018: Immediate release 26 August 2018

The battlefield of Bosworth under threat

The Richard III Society, along with many others such as The Battlefields Trust, is appalled to learn of the planning application by Horiba Mira Ltd to build a testing facility for driverless cars on part of the site of the historic battle of Bosworth where in 1485 King Richard III lost his life and crown. We have written to the relevant planning authority, Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council, to voice our strong objections on behalf of our worldwide membership.

It is even more disheartening that news of this application was only made public on the 22 August, the very anniversary of the battle, just a week before it is due to be considered by the council’s Planning Committee on the 28 August. There are many interested parties whose views should have been sought earlier and it is of considerable concern that so little time has now been allowed for these voices to be heard.

The site of the battle of Bosworth is of vital national and local importance, the land under threat even more so given its proximity to the area now identified as being where King Richard III fought his last stand. Bosworth is one of just 46 battlefields given registered status by Historic England.

The Richard III Society urges Hinckley & Bosworth Borough Council and all those involved with this planning application to take note of the outpouring of objections from interested parties who care about the integrity of the battlefield and its value to our heritage.

At the very least the Planning Committee should put this application on hold and allow a proper and comprehensive assessment to be made of its impact on the battlefield, its archaeology and its tourism value. To give approval without such consideration and to ignore the many objections received would be a betrayal of our heritage and set a dangerous precedent.

The Richard III Society

Download and read the press release.

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23 August 2018: Historic Bosworth Battlefield site threatened

Sadly, we have learned today of plans to build on part of the historic Bosworth Battlefield site, where King Richard lost his life 533 years ago yesterday.

While the public consultation period for this has now ended, we are hoping that if enough objections are raised, even at this late stage, the council will take note and reject this application.

If you wish to contact the council and raise an objection, please email the following: (Case officer) and also copy to Please quote planning reference 18/00425FUL

The planning meeting regarding this application is to be held next Tuesday 28th August, so time is very much of the essence.

Please also be aware that our Chairman, Dr Phil Stone, will be contacting the Council on behalf of the Society, so your emails should come from you personally, not the Society.

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11 August 2018: Richard wins Bosworth this year!

The annual Bosworth commemoration will this year be a little different, with an 'alternative' version of the battle — with King Richard emerging victorious — will be staged at 11.00am on the mornings of Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th August.

Press release

This year’s Bosworth Medieval Festival is set to present a twist on the history-changing Battle of Bosworth – by exploring what would have happened if the outcome had been different and King Richard III had won the day. The Festival takes place this year on Saturday 18 and Sunday 19 August, with lots of activities for visitors of all ages, jousting, archery, cannon fire demonstrations, living history encampments, guided tours, author talks, a medieval craft market and loads of exciting fun, hands-on games and competitions for children.

Both days of the Bosworth Medieval Festival end with a minute’s silence, followed by a full re-enactment of the famous battle of 22 August 1485, complete with massed infantry, archers, cannon cavalry and commentary, to commemorate those who fought and died in 1485.

In the re-enactment – as in reality - Richard III dies fighting surrounded by his enemies and Henry Tudor, with help from the Stanleys, wins the day and the crown of England.

This year there will also be an alternative look at the battle at 11am on both mornings. The Wars of the Roses Federation, in conjunction with Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre, will explore what led to King Richard III’s defeat by presenting an alternative Battle of Bosworth, in which the Plantagenet monarch manages to win the day and successfully defends his crown.

The true outcome of Bosworth was a turning point in English, European and international history, but in a special interactive 30-minute debate session on each day, the audience will be led in a discussion about what might be different today if Richard had been the victor on 22 August 1485. These debates will be at 10.15am on Saturday and 3pm on Sunday and are available to Medieval Festival ticket holders at an extra cost of £3.

Councillor Richard Blunt, Leicestershire County Council’s Cabinet member for Heritage, Leisure & Arts, said: 'Bosworth Medieval Festival is a great event, with plenty of activities to keep the whole family entertained. The morning battle showing an alternative outcome to the Battle of Bosworth is an excellent new addition to the weekend’s programme.'

Heritage Development Manager Richard Knox said: 'The Battle of Bosworth was a pivotal moment in English history, bringing the Tudor dynasty to the throne. This year, as well as re-enacting the Battle of Bosworth and remembering those who fought and died in it, we will be looking at what would have happened if Richard III had been victorious.'

'Would England have remained a Catholic country if the Tudors had never come to the throne? What would our legal system look like? Would we have a very different society to where we are today?'

'The alternative battle outcome and the interactive debate sessions will offer visitors a new insight into the Battle of Bosworth and we are really excited to be able to add this to our popular Bosworth Medieval Festival programme.'

Tickets for Bosworth Medieval Festival can be booked online at or by calling 01455 290429 between 10am and 5pm. They are also available in person from Bosworth Battlefield, 1620s House and the Century Theatre. Buy before midnight on August 17th and save 10% on all ticket prices. Please note that a £2 transaction fee is applicable for telephone sales.

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11 August 2018:Bosworth Commemorations 2018

Saturday 18th AugustChoral Evensong at Leicester Cathedral. A special service of Choral Evensong with rose laying to mark the anniversary of the death of King Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485 will be held in Leicester Cathedral on Saturday 18 August 2018 at 5.30pm to be followed by refreshments in the Cathedral.

Preacher: The Bishop of Loughborough Service sung by the Choir of St Wulfrum’s, Grantham. All are welcome

There will be the usual parade with the banners and Society Chairman, Phil Stone, will lay a wreath at King Richard’s tomb.

Wednesday 22nd AugustCommemorative rose laying at Bosworth Battlefield Led by The Right Reverend Martyn Snow, Bishop of Leicester, and Reverend Julia Hargreaves, at the Memorial Sundial, Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre. Event starts at 11am, all are welcome.

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30 July 2018: The DNA of the Missing Princes

A recent newspaper report announced that newly discovered DNA could prove whether Richard III murdered the princes in the Tower. What is the real significance of this discovery?

The research was undertaken by Society member, Glen Moran, after hearing a talk by John Ashdown-Hill. He revealed that, contrary to previous assumptions, an all female line had survived on the princes’ mother’s side. This means that mitrochondrial DNA that would match the princes could be identified.

If it were possible to examine the DNA of any of the various bones speculatively identified as those of the ‘Princes in the Tower’, this new discovery would help to establish for certain whether they really are those of the missing princes. The DNA already obtained from Richard III would also be key.

TIf the bones did include Richard III’s male line DNA, then it would be certain that they were closely related. However, technically, they might still be another relative, such as otherwise unknown royal bastards. This is, of course, highly unlikely, but only with the female line DNA as well could scientists be absolutely certain.

The other scenario in which the female line DNA could prove significant is if either Cecily duchess of York (the princes’ grandmother), or Elizabeth Woodville (their mother) had been unfaithful so that their offspring did not actually share the male line DNA of Richard III. Again, this is highly unlikely, although some historians and writers have argued that we should believe contemporary rumours that Edward IV was illegitimate. (For a recent refutation of ‘evidence’ for this, see Livia Visser-Fuchs’ article in the most recent edition of The Ricardian).

Could this impact on our understanding of whether Richard III killed the princes? This would depend on finding bones that could positively be identified as those of the princes. If the evidence of the bones indicated that the boys were clearly too old to have died in Richard III’s reign, then we would know that he could not have ordered their deaths. There are of course various sites rumoured to hold the remains of one or other of the princes, but whether the right body can be found and access granted for testing is of course another challenge. Unfortunately, if the boys merely fell sick or were killed by someone else during Richard’s reign, or shortly afterwards, the mystery would remain even if the bones could be found.

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23 July 2018: Keith Horry, the Society's Non-Fiction Librarian

It is with great sadness that we have to announce the death of our Non-Fiction Librarian Keith Horry, who passed away on the 19 July after a period of illness. He had been librarian since 2006. There will be a full obituary and other tributes in December’s Bulletin. In the meantime, we extend our deepest sympathy to his widow Lisa and son Gareth.

Lisa Horry has very kindly agreed to maintain the library until a replacement librarian can be found but we ask members to show patience when applying to borrow books and to appreciate that Lisa is undertaking the librarian’s role at a very difficult time.

The Society will now be recruiting a new Non-Fiction Librarian, so please see the forthcoming September Bulletin for further details.

Phil Stone for the Executive Committee.

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18 May 2018: Dr John Ashdown-Hill

It is with sadness that we announce the passing on 18th May 2018 of Dr John Ashdown-Hill. A prolific and popular author, John played an important, not to say critical, role in the Looking for Richard Project. It was he who tracked down Mike Ibsen, one of the two whose mtDNA helped to confirm that the remains in the car park were actually those of King Richard. When we first learnt of John’s illness, one could only wonder how long he had before he succumbed, motor neurone disease coming in various forms, some worse than others. For John, his passing was probably a blessing though he will be much missed by his friends and members of the Society. Our thoughts and prayers go with them all at this time. The news comes too late for the June issue of the Ricardian Bulletin but there will be a full tribute in the September issue.

Executive Committee

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29 April 2018: Trial of Shakespeare's Richard III - King Not Guilty

In a trial of Shakespeare's Richard III held in aid of the Shakespeare Schools Foundation at the Novello Theatre in London on 29th April, King Richard III was found 'Not Guilty' by the jury. The Society's Chairman, Dr Phil Stone, attended the event and reported:

'In a truly enjoyable evening, the Shakespeare Schools Foundation mounted their trial of Richard III. As well as specialist legal teams and great acting amongst the principal witnesses - Buckingham, Deighton and Forrest, Lady Anne Neville - a group of school children enacted scenes from the play to illustrate some of the 'crimes'. They also put on a superbly funny pantomime to illustrate who all the Edwards and Richards were, how they were related, and what happened to them. Richard III was tried for the murders of Clarence and the Princes in the Tower and at the end of the trial, the audience was the jury and asked for its verdict. Much to the chagrin of the Prosecution, Richard was declared 'NOT GUILTY'.

The Society provided the following article for the event's programme, highlighting the differences between Shakespeare's version of Richard and the real man:

Was Shakespeare’s Richard III the real Richard?

'It must be remembered that history is written by the victors. When Richard III died in battle, his supporters were silenced. Henry Tudor’s claim to the throne was weak and he blackened Richard III’s name to justify taking it.

Most historical accounts of Richard date from after the battle at Bosworth which began the Tudor Age. No one dared to defend the late King. Shakespeare used these sources and, through the genius of his writing, an evil caricature was created.

There is no contemporary evidence that Richard was deformed, that he killed Henry VI or the Duke of Clarence, or that the Princes were killed in his reign. This is not to say that Richard was a saint – he lived in turbulent times - but the real man was a faithful son and loyal brother.

His one Parliament showed his desire to rule justly and well. It was notable for its enlightened legislation which helped the lower classes as much as the gentry and merchants. The achievements of his short reign were real and had lasting impact. His legal reforms continued after his death, with some still embedded in our laws today.

There are many possibilities as to the fate of the Princes in the Tower but there is no evidence to confirm any one of them. Richard had motive to kill them but so did others – Henry Tudor, his mother, Buckingham. To kill them would have gone against Richard’s sense of family and his promises to his beloved brother Edward. The boys may even have survived their uncle and lived abroad.

Shakespeare was a great dramatist, but he never let the facts get in the way of a good story. Margaret of Anjou is an important character in the play but she had died in exile in France before Richard came to the throne. In “Henry VI Part II”, Richard, as Duke of Gloucester, kills the Duke of Somerset at the first battle of St Albans. However, Richard Plantagenet, as he then was, was not yet three years old at the time. And so Shakespeare’s ‘history’ goes on. His Richard III is a great dramatic character, beloved by actors who have played him, but historically it does not compare with the real man.

The Richard III Society was founded in 1924 by people unconvinced by the Tudor myths. Today it has a worldwide membership of some 3,500 based mainly in the United Kingdom, the USA and Australasia.The Society’s Patron, HRH the Duke of Gloucester, has said: 'The purpose and indeed strength of the Richard III Society derive from the belief that the truth is more important than lies.'

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July 2018: Middleham Richard III Festival 2018 — 6 to 8 July 2018

Tickets are now available for this year’s Middleham Celebrates Richard III Festival. The Festival will be held 6-8 July at King Richard’s former home of Middleham.

The event begins on 6 July with a Medieval Banquet. On 7 July talks include ‘The Voice of Richard III’ - with speakers Philippa Langley MBE and Yvonne Morley-Chisholm of the ‘Voice for Richard Project’. On 8 July talks include ‘The Family of Richard III’ and features talks by Matthew Lewis on Richard, Duke of York; the Richard III Society’s Research Officer Joanna Laynesmith on Cecily, Duchess of York; and Philippa Langley MBE who led the search for King Richard III.

During the days, stalls and other entertainments will be available in and around the castle, and the King and Queen will once again be in residence. The Society will also have a stall so please come and say hello!

Tickets for the banquet and talks are now available from the Middleham Key Centre on 01969 624411, Monday – Thursday 9am – 2pm.

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March 2018: Reburial Evensong — 25 March 2018

Leicester Cathedral held a special Choral Evensong for the third anniversary of the King's reburial on Sunday 25 March 2018.

Father Alan Hawker, a Society member, who was heavily involved in the special service for Society members before the reburial conducted the service. The banners were carried from the Visitor Centre to the Cathedral, and the Society Chairman, Dr Phil Stone, laid a wreath on King Richard's tomb.

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March 2018: Greyfriars site

It has been announced that the Greyfriars site in Leicester — the original burial place of King Richard — has been granted Scheduled Monument status, protecting it from further development. Chairman of the Society, Dr Phil Stone, said: 'This is wonderful news! Members of the Richard III Society and the Looking for Richard Project are delighted to learn that the grave site of the last Plantagenet king is to be protected from the risk of further development.'

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October 2017: Wreath laying — 2 October 2017

Clifton Martin of the Richard III Society laid a wreath on King Richard's tomb this morning to commemorate the King's birth on 2nd October 1452.

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Membership Renewal reminder

Members are reminded that subscription renewals become due on 2nd October 2017. If you pay by standing order, please remember to update the amount payable in line with the new subscription rates:

  • Full member: £29
  • Senior member*: £22
  • Student*: £22
  • Junior*: £12
  • Family: £35
  • Senior family*: £28
  • Schools: £35

The overseas postage supplement applicable to all non-UK residents in £13.

*Senior members are 60 or over; Senior family members all over 60; Juniors are under 18; and Students are 18+ and in full time education.

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August 2017: Bosworth Commemorations 2017

On Saturday 19th August 2017 at 5.30pm Choral Evensong at Leicester Cathedral will commemorate the anniversary of the death of Richard III. There will be white rose petals scattered at the graveside in the Richard III Visitor Centre and white roses laid at the statue. The Society Chairman Dr. Phil Stone will lay white roses at the tomb. The banners that stand beside the king's tomb will lead the procession carried by members of the Leicestershire branch of the Richard III Society.

Refreshments will be served after the service and the Cathedral will remain open to visitors until 7.30pm. All are welcome.

There will be a Rose Laying Ceremony at Bosworth Battlefield on Tuesday 22nd August 2017 at 11.00am - 12.00pm. The ceremony will take place at the Bosworth Sundial Memorial to remember all those that died on both sides of the Battle of Bosworth. Richard Smith, Chairman of the Leicestershire branch will say a few words on behalf of the Society Chairman Dr. Phil Stone.

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July 2017: Richard III in Leicester Cathedral *update*

Come what may, the performances of Shakespeare's Richard III in Leicester Cathedral will go ahead. However, the Dean has asked the Society to supply an information sheet which can be placed on seats for every member of the audience. Consequently, the Society has provided something which points out that the real Richard III was a very different man to the one they are about to seen on the stage. They will be printed off and distributed by the Cathedral authorities at no cost to the Society. A copy of the information sheet provided by the Society can be viewed here.

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Summer 2017: John Ashdown-Hill

As John is no longer able to take bookings for talks, he has added updated versions of some of his Powerpoint presentations on his web site where you can download them to view.

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Summer 2017: Bosworth Battlefield Summer Events

Events taking place at Bosworth this summer, remember Members of the Society receive a 20% discount on standard admission tickets to the Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre on production of their Membership Card.

Guided Walks: weekends & Bank holidays year round at 11.30 am & 2.00 pm

Join one of Bosworth’s experienced Guides for an informative 2 km guided walk exploring the Battle of Bosworth, the death of King Richard III and the unlikely victory of Henry Tudor. This is a great way to learn about the Battle of Bosworth. Adult £4.50, Concession £4, Child £3.

Bosworth Medieval Festival: 19th & 20th August all day

This is a great full day family event, with not just the battle re-enactment, but jousting, a medieval market, children’s games, large living history encampment, author talks & book signings, entry to the award-winning Exhibition, FREE car parking and lots more too.

An early bird discount of 20% is available on the first 500 tickets for the Medieval Festival, which includes the annual re-enactment of the Battle of Bosworth, children’s activities, living history, music, jousting and cannon & gunfire displays.

Tickets can be purchased as follows:

  1. by phone on 01455 290429, for which a £2 per transaction booking fee applies,
  2. in person at the Heritage Centre Ticket Office, which is open daily 10.00 am – 5.00 pm, or
  3. online at online

There will also be a number of talks as part of the Festival on

  1. The Trial of Richard III: You Decide
  2. William Marshall from Hostage to Regent: An Extraordinary Life
  3. The Missing Princes Project & HRH
  4. Tudor: The Family Story

Dissolution: Monasteries to Mansions Talk: 19th July

Join Peter Liddle for this talk in the Heritage Room at Bosworth Battlefield.

Abbeys and priories were an important part of the fabric of medieval society, in the 1530’s they were swept away as Henry VIII broke with Rome and Thomas Cromwell dissolved the houses.

In this illustrated talk Peter Liddle will examine what impact this had on Leicestershire sites, both the religious houses themselves and their grange farms, with case studies of the process at Leicester Abbey, Grace Dieu and Launde, where Cromwell himself acquired the property.

Tickets £6 – Pre booking recommended by calling 01455 290429 or at online

The Path to Bosworth Field Walk: 2nd September

Experienced walkers with a penchant for history can join expert Guides and enjoy Bosworth Battlefield’s extended 7.5 mile (12 km) walk. Providing all aspects of the environment surrounding this pivotal battle of the Wars of the Roses. No dogs. Please provide your own lunch and refreshments. For experienced walkers over 12 years only. Adults £17 Concessions £12. Booking essential – book online or call 01455 290429 to book your tickets now.

Details of all walks, talks and events can be found on their website.

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02 June 2017: Richard III Book of Hours on display

King Richard’s ‘Book of Hours’ which was last seen as part of the ceremony when the king was reburied in March 2015 is now on display as part of an exhibition called Battles and Dynasties in Lincoln. Along with many other historical artefacts, including the ‘Domesday Book', it will be on display until 3 September 2017. For more information about the exhibition please visit The Collection Museum’s website.

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02 June 2017: Society Sponsorship – ‘Middleham Celebrates Richard III’

On Friday 30 June, before the festival celebrating Richard’s life and connections with Middleham, there will be a special event for local school children. Three schools are participating in an Education Day which will involve a range of displays and interactive sessions including candle making, cooking and archery. The day also includes a short church service for Richard III. We are very pleased to announce that the Society will be sponsoring the coach transport which will take the local children to and from the event on the day. The festival begins with a concert at St Mary’s and St Akelda’s church on Friday evening and continues over the weekend during Saturday and Sunday 1/2 of July. Tickets and further information on other talks and events are available from the Middleham Key Centre on 01969 624411.

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28 June 2017: Bowes Museum talk

Richard III and historical enthusiasts are invited to a varied programme of talks called 'Richard III and the Wider World' at The Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle, County Durham. The event will be looking at the Northern attitude towards the King; 15thcentury Netherlands; dress of differing social levels in medieval society, and continental art at the royal court.

Date: 28 June 2017

Time: 10.30 – 3.00

Cost: £3.00 inc. light refreshments

Booking is required.

Tel: 01833 690606 or


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28 April 2017: Society Research Blog launched

The Research Committee have set up a blog to help share knowledge of recent research into the life and times of Richard III. It is for both Ricardians and anyone interested in the fifteenth century. The first post ('Buried Treasures') relates to the burials of Richard’s siblings at Fotheringhay church as well as to one of Cecily duchess of York’s books, and the latest post, 'The Myth of Joan of York'.

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24 March 2017: Richard III themed family bedroom

On Friday 24th March, Philippa Langley MBE, cut the ribbon to officially open a new Richard III themed family bedroom at the Belmont Hotel in Leicester. The room is decorated in muted colours and features both a Graham Turner print of Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth as well as a copy of the traditional 16th century portrait which belongs to the National Portrait Gallery.

Accompanied by the Lord Mayor of Leicester, Stephen Corrall and Jamie Bowie the owner of the hotel, Philippa said 'I am incredibly honoured to be opening the Richard III themed room at the Belmont as it is my ‘home away from home’ in Leicester. I stayed at the hotel for the dig and discovery, the identification and the reburial. As a result, it is mentioned in the account of my seven and a half year search for the king in the car park in: The King’s Grave: The Search for Richard III. I hope the themed room will help increase interest in this much maligned monarch for the many visitors to the hotel so that they too may wish to discover more about him, and so that they too can enjoy a really friendly and family run hotel!'

Philippa also stayed in the room herself during her stay in Leicester over the re-interment weekend.

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20 March 2017: Reburial Anniversary 2017 Statement

Society Chairman, Phil Stone writes: 'Sunday, 26th March is the second anniversary of the reburial of the remains of King Richard and it will be marked by a special service of Evensong in Leicester Cathedral, during which flowers will be placed at the tomb. The finding and reburial of the remains of the king will always be one of the major achievements of the Richard III Society and it is fitting that we remember it, especially in the place where he lies at peace, a place of honour, a place of sanctity, adorned with the banners and heraldry he would have recognised as his own. As we remember the reburial, let us remember Richard III, King of England and France and Lord of Ireland, as a man of integrity, as a law giver, as a man who cared for his subjects and those who had his trust. Also, as we remember the reburial, giving Richard III the honour and dignity denied him in 1485, let us not forget those others who died on Bosworth Field. For most, their names are lost, but they were men like us. As we remember them, let us hope and pray that one day, the world will see an end to war and conflict, a time when man may no longer have to die for a cause'.

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18 March 2017: Website Homepage is changing!

For the past two years, the Homepage of our website has displayed three images relating to that momentous week in March 2015 when King Richard III was laid to rest in Leicester Cathedral. From April 2017, after the anniversary of his reburial in March, this is due to change. During April, we will feature any pictures that are taken during memorial events or services which take place on the anniversary of the reburial in March 2017.

The image of the tomb will still remain on the Home Page, but will change location within the page and still provide a link to the Reburial Diary and events.

After that, the plan is to change the main images on regular basis. The idea behind this is to begin to show pictures related to events throughout Richard’s lifetime, and not just in connection with his reburial. These will be images of places, surviving buildings, memorials, research projects or other events which commemorate different times in his life, either as Duke of Gloucester or as king. If you would like to see any particular event remembered, or share your pictures of any favourite building or memorial related to Richard’s life featured prominently on the Home Page, please email Sharon Lock, Communications Manager ( for more information on how to get involved.

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26 March 2017: Richard III Events in Leicester for reburial weekend 2017

Details have just been announced of events marking the anniversary of the reburial.

There will be a Choral Evensong at Leicester Cathedral at 3pm on Sunday March 26th. Representatives of the Richard III Society will be taking part in the service. Service details.

The Richard III Visitor Centre, 4A St. Martins, Leicester, LE1 5DB Tel: 0300 300 0900 will holding a Question and Answer session with Philippa Langley at 10.00 am on Saturday March 25th. The price for this is £10. The event is due to be launched on Monday and should appear on the Richard III Visitor Centre website.

It is also understood that Philippa Langley will be opening the Belmont Hotel’s new Richard III bedroom at lunchtime on Friday March 24th. Philippa will also be hosting a dinner on the evening of Saturday March 25th. Further details of these events and a weekend package can be obtained.

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19 March 2017: Special event to commemorate Richard III on Sunday, 19 March in Market Bosworth

In 2015 Market Bosworth felt very privileged to be a key resting place on the last journey of the mortal remains of King Richard III to their reburial in Leicester Cathedral.That special event, on 22 March, attracted many thousands of people to view the funeral cortège as it passed through the village which was bedecked with banners, bunting and shields in honour of the King.Thanks to the hard work of a small number of local people, the event, and in particular the sale of 1485 porcelain white roses, resulted in a small financial surplus being available for community use. Inspired by the legacy of the 22 March event, the Parish Council together with the village’s Richard III steering group, decided to use the fund primarily to commission an artwork to be installed in the Market Place.In addition to the village’s Richard III funds, the commemoration has been supported by Hinckley and Borough Council and the input of a small number of local volunteers. The artwork will be dedicated by the Rector of Market Bosworth Rev. Mark Poskitt, Richard Smith and Sally Henshaw representing the Richard III Society and Councillor Richard Allen the Mayor of Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council on 19th March.

The artwork has been crafted by local specialist stone sculptor, Damian Witty. Some images of Damian making the artwork are shown. Apart from the text around the stone the centre will portray a white rose. The artwork will be officially revealed at 3.30 as part of a medieval themed event in the Market Place. Captain Mortimer and his reenactors will be there, plus the award winning Hawkwise from the Battlefield Centre, medieval music, a special mobile cinema, Bosworth Battlefield retail stall, the community choir and much more. It is planned that bunting and floral displays in the colours of Richard III will be hung around the Square, and white roses will decorate shop windows.

The events are free, and commence at 1 pm, concluding at 5 pm.

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9 February 2017: British History’s Biggest Fibs

A review by Matthew Lewis

The first episode of Lucy Worsley’s new series, British History’s Greatest Fibs, dealt with the foundation myth of the Tudor dynasty that crafted the popular view of the Wars of the Roses that endures to this day, begun by Henry VII after his victory at Bosworth and set into stone by Shakespeare over a hundred years later.

Beginning with the myth of the Black Pudding and Yorkshire Pudding slinging Battle of Stubbins, the episode takes the viewer through the apocalyptic events at Towton to debunk the belief that England spent thirty-two years solidly on a war footing when in fact the conflict probably boiled down to around thirteen weeks of campaigning and fighting. The gruesome injuries visible on the skulls of those killed at Towton serve to underline the brutality of that day, but also the exceptional nature of such a vast confrontation.

Rous Rolls
Richard III from the c. 1483
English version of the Rous Roll, an illustrated armorial
roll-chronicle by John Rous (d. 1491), chantry
priest of Guy's Cliffe, Warwickshire.
(British Library Add MS 48976).
Copyright The British Library.
Examinations of contemporary documents such as the de la Pole genealogy roll, a compendium of poetry and prose once owned by Edward IV and the Rous Roll help to explain the swift evolution both of Richard III as a villain and of Henry VII as a saviour and the force for unity he needed to portray himself as. The story of the Tudor saving of England grows as the Tudor rose takes on an iconic brand identity that remains strong today and shows the success of the myth building. Shakespeare’s handle on the politics of the late Elizabethan period explains his use of the Wars of the Roses to expose the threat of civil war that accompanied the looming succession crisis.

The programme was not perfect. Aimed at busting myths and exploding fibs, it managed to create one of its own, explaining that Edward IV won his crown in 1471. The Wars of the Roses was described as consisting of about eight battles when seventeen are in fact recorded. The focus on the establishment of the Tudor dynasty’s foundation myth and in particular the role of the Tudor rose left little room for dispelling specific fibs and the chance to confront misconceptions was passed over or sidestepped a little too often. The focus on various portrayals of Shakespeare’s Richard III is not used to question the received perception of the man but rather to perpetuate it. The Princes in the Tower are left killed by their tyrannical uncle and the discovery of Richard’s scoliosis is used to suggest that the traditional portrayal of him may not be that far from the truth, a sad recitation of an historical fib that was ripe for busting.

The programme concludes by discussing the long-standing rivalry between Ricardians and Tudor supporters in the shadow of the statue of King Richard III between Leicester Cathedral and the Richard III Visitor Centre with the founder of the Henry Tudor Society. Does there really have to be a goodie and a baddie? That seems like buying into the Tudor version of events. The final disappointment is that the Richard III Society was not invited to contribute to the countering of the period’s fibs, even at this part of the programme, demonstrating the astonishing success of the Tudor version of the Wars of the Roses that remains strong to this day and still defies deconstruction.

A complete version of this review can be found here.

'British History’s Biggest Fibs – Episode 1 – The Wars of the Roses' is available to view on BBC iPlayer

More from Matthew Lewis:

  • 'The Wars of the Roses: The Key Players in the Struggle for Supremacy' is available from the Society Shop.
  • 'Richard, Duke of York, King by Right' is available from all good bookstores and from

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1 February 2017: Membership Card Discounts

Following the introduction of new-style membership cards last December, various organisations and locations have been approached regarding the possibility of giving Society members a discount on the entry fee. Currently, the following locations will give discounts on production of the new-style card:

  • Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle: discounted rate of £7 per person for groups of 12 or more.
  • Ludlow Castle: discount of 10% for groups of 10 or more.
  • Sudeley Castle: individual discount of 20%. We have been informed that they will also be adding to a section about Eleanor Talbot/Boteler to their Richard III Exhibition this year.
  • York Archaeological Trust – Barley Hall & Richard III and Henry VII Experiences: individual discounts of 15%.
  • King Richard III Visitor Centre – Leicester individual discount of 25%. Offer valid from 1st March 2017.
  • Haddon Hall - 10% discount on full ticket prices.
  • Further updates will appear on the Society’s website and in later Bulletins. For members’ information, English Heritage and National Trust do not offer discounts other than to their own members.

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    16 January 2017: Richard III’s Book of Hours on-line

    The Book of Hours known to have belonged to Richard III has now been digitised and is on-line so that anyone can look at in full and not just the page with the well-known picture of the Annunciation. Also, part of the digitisation, is a copy of the book by the Society’s Anne Sutton and Livia Visser-Fuchs which gives a detailed commentary about the Book, its origin and its contents.

    The work was done under the auspices of Leicester Cathedral, where Richard’s book was used during the service of Reinterment in March 2015. We are most grateful to the Cathedral for doing the work and to Lambeth Palace Library, where the Book is usually kept, for allowing it.

    Our thanks also go to Anne and Livia for their permission to add their work to complete the presentation.

    In order to facilitate the digitisation, the Society gave a donation to help defray the costs.

    Richard III’s Book of Hours can be seen on Please wait until pages are fully loaded, else they can look somewhat distorted.

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    5 November 2016: Bridport memorial unveiled

    The memorial crafted from white
    Portland stone by Karl and Christine Dixon.
    Richard III Society member, Arthur Woodgate,
    who instigated the memorial and the
    High Sheriff of Dorset, Sir Philip Williams.
    A memorial commemorating King Richard's visited to Bridport during November 1483 was unveiled in the town on the 5 November by the High Sheriff of Dorset, Sir Philip Williams. Over sixty people attended the event, considerably more than were anticipated. There will be a full report in March's Ricardian Bulletin..’

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    1 November: New Membership category – Schools Membership

    As part of the Society’s Education Programme it now offers Schools/Academies/Colleges an institutional membership at £35 per year. This category includes one issue of The Ricardian, the Society’s historical journal which publishes original articles on Ricardian and associated topics together with book reviews of recent historical publications; three copies of each issue of the quarterly Ricardian Bulletin the Society’s lively and informative members’ magazine published in March, June, September, and December. Schools would have the other benefits of membership and it is hoped to add to the benefits of school membership.

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    1 November 2016: Junior Membership – Reduction in Subscription rate

    As part of the Society’s Schools Education Programme it has been decided to offer school students, under the age of 18, a special annual membership rate of £12. With the tremendous interest that has been generated in the finding and reburial of the earthly remains of King Richard III, plus the recent films and documentaries on the Wars of the Roses period of the 15th Century, the Society felt that it was an appropriate time to encourage young students to develop an interest in the medieval history of the 15th Century and the key role played by Richard III in the history of this period.

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    30 October 2016: Middleham Castle Richard III statue

    We have been contacted by Gilian Savage, the Manager of Middleham Castle, who has given us the following statement from English Heritage with regards to recent publicity about replacement of the statue of Richard III at the castle.

    'We have been approached by various people who are keen to see the statue reviewed in the light of the discovery of Richards remains and the discoveries over the last few years. In support people have been looking at fundraising opportunities but any statue replacement would have to be authorised by and designed in conjunction with English Heritage and the English Heritage curatorial team.’

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    25 October 2016: King Richard's visit to Bridport commemorated

    BridportOn Saturday 5 November a memorial will be unveiled in Bridport commemorating Richard III's visit to the town in 1483. The unveiling takes place on the exact 533rd anniversary of this event.

    The ceremony will take place at 2pm by the East Bridge; the memorial is being placed beside the River Asker facing the oriel window one of the few remaining parts of the Priory of St John the Baptist. It is here that King Richard is likely to have stayed.

    The memorial's cost has been met by public donations, including one from the Richard III Society. It will be made of white Portland stone and will have details of the 1483 visit, a depiction of Richard III's White Boar and his motto 'Loyaulté me lie'.

    There will be an illustrated account of the unveiling in the March 2017 issue of the Ricardian Bulletin.

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    16 October 2016: New membership cards.

    At the 2016 AGM we reported on the introduction of annual membership cards from this year for all members. These will be included as a 'peel off' section of a letter confirming receipt of subscription payment which will be sent with the December Bulletin. The category of membership will be included and family members wishing to have more than one card should contact E-Mediacy who will provide additional cards on request. If it appears that no subscription has been received, a letter to this effect will be included with the December Bulletin. If payment has been made, you should advise E-Mediacy of the payment details so a correction can be made.

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    10 October 2016: Royal Photographic Society Award

    The Society would like to congratulate Professor Caroline Wilkinson on receiving the Combined Royal Colleges Award from the Royal Photographic Society for “an outstanding contribution to the advancement of medical photography or medical imaging.”

    The citation states that she is an authority on facial reconstruction and often called on as an expert in the media. Also, Prof Wilkinson is a leading figure in facial anthropology and the developments used to reconstruct/identify individuals without DNA, fingerprints and dental records.

    Her reconstruction of the face of Richard III is featured in a small film about her on the RPS website and the reconstruction can be seen in the King Richard III Visitor centre in Leicester where it is on permanent loan from the Society.

    More can be seen here.

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    5 October 2016: Sandal Castle

    Sandal castleIt was with great dismay that we heard about the recent vandalism carried out at Sandal Castle, once the home of King Richard’s father, Richard, Duke of York.

    The site is of significant local and national interest, being the location of the Battle of Wakefield where both the Duke of York, and his son, Edmund, Earl of Rutland, lost their lives in December 1460. The Society is very aware of the recent publicity surrounding these deplorable acts and is currently considering if there is anything they can do to assist the local authority and other interested parties in protecting the site from further attacks of this nature.

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    20 September 2016: Richard III & Sir Henry Wyatt

    October’s issue of the BBC History Magazine includes an interesting and informative article by Steven Gunn entitled ‘Henry VII’s brilliant upstarts’ which explores Henry’s use of men in prominent government positions who were not members of the nobility. This group included Sir Henry Wyatt.

    Unfortunately it repeats as fact the story that Sir Henry was imprisoned and tortured ‘at the hands of Richard III’. There is no contemporary evidence to support this; the story, as with so many of the myths about the king, appeared many years later by which time the post-Bosworth legend of the villainous Richard III had already been well established.

    In September 2011 in response to a query raised about a similar reference in Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall, the Ricardian Bulletin published an article that sought to establish the facts about Sir Henry Wyatt and these claims of torture at the ‘hands of Richard III’. An extended version of this article can be accessed here.

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    7 September 2016: New Richard III Standard

    Following recent discussions with English Heritage, the Society is pleased to announce that it is be donating a new Richard III standard to Middleham Castle. By providing a standard made of a more robust material than the current one, it has been agreed that the number of times when the banner will fly can be increased. The Society is pleased to announce that the dates when Richard III’s standard will be flown above Middleham Castle have now been confirmed and are listed below. The dates when the standard will fly at half-mast are now the 22nd August and the 16th April.

    New Richard III Standard

    • 1 February: Richard III marries Anne 1473

    • 16 March: Queens Anne’s death 1485

    • 26 March: Reburial in Leicester of Richard III in 2015

    • 16 April: Edward of Middleham died 1484

    • 29 June: Richard III granted the Neville strongholds of Middleham, Sheriff Hutton and Penrith 1471

    • 1-2 July: Middleham Fesitval

    • 6 July: Richard III crowned 1483

    • 22 August: Richard III died 1485

    • 2 October: Birth of Richard III 1452

    Many thanks to Annette Carson and Marie Barnfield for advising on the dates for the marriage of Richard and Anne and the death of Edward of Middleham. These are believed to be the best we can estimate until further research reveals more accurate dates.

    The standard will be officially donated to the castle on behalf of the Society on 2nd October at 2.30pm by Susan Wells, Deputy Chairman.

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    4 September 2016: Middleham Castle Noticeboard Portrait

    'Members and others may be aware that the noticeboard at Middleham Castle displays the National Portrait Gallery picture of King Richard and that it is now looking rather shabby. On hearing about this, and a rumour that the picture was to be replaced with one of the statue that stands in the bailey of the castle, the Society contacted English Heritage, in order to confirm or deny the rumour and to protest if it was true. We were then advised that the picture, indeed, is to be replaced but with another copy of the same. It is to be hoped that it will not be too much longer before the work is undertaken — perhaps EH are waiting for the winter months when visitor numbers go down.'

    Phil Stone, The Richard II Society Chairman

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    18 July 2016: Nottingham Castle Transformation

    Notts Castle
    Nottingham Castle as it would have appeared in 1500.
    Here in 1484 Richard III and Anne Neville learned
    of the death of their son Edward,thereafter he referred
    to it as his ‘Castle of Care’. In the summer of 1485 he was
    based at the castle awaiting the expected invasion of Henry Tudor
    Nottingham Castle, a former royal palace and a residence of significant strategic importance to Richard III during his short reign, is shortly to undergo a dramatic transformation. Plans for the castle include a new Visitor Centre situated near the medieval gatehouse, tours through the castle caves with access to previously unseen areas and a range of new exhibitions, including an interactive experience in the Robin Hood Gallery and a new Rebellion Gallery exploring four major periods of social unrest and rebellion in Nottingham, from the medieval period onwards.

    Earlier this month, representatives of the Society were invited to a presentation explaining full plans for the transformation. This was followed by a meeting with the project team to talk about the many important connections which Richard III had with Nottingham Castle, not least the fact that he rode out from there on his way to Bosworth Field in 1485. Discussions included the length of time he spent there, the role of the castle during the rebellions against his rule, the visit by Scots Ambassadors in September 1484 and of course the fact that both Richard and his queen were in residence at Nottingham Castle when they heard of the death of their only son, Edward. He was afterwards known to refer to Nottingham as "the castle of his care." The team considered different ways in which Richard's story could be included as the project moves through its phases and we are very pleased to announce that we will be working in partnership with the project team going forwards.

    Cal Warren, Nottingham Castle Project Programme Manager said: 'Nottingham Castle has a rich history dating back nearly 1,000 years. It has been shaped by Norman and Medieval kings, 17th and 18th Century nobility, and by the Citizens of Nottingham.

    'Through the centuries, our Castle has been transformed through power, battles, rioting, culture and now inspiration. Its history charts its progres¬sion of destruction and reinterpretation from a medieval motte and bailey fortification through to Royal stronghold and onwards to the existing Ducal Palace - an impressive and imposing example of a 17th Century mansion which today is a landmark feature of the City.

    'Over the next 4 years, we will develop research projects in partnership with the Richard III Society, to establish more about the intriguing Richard III and the role he played in the Castle’s history.'

    For more information on the transformation project:

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    11 July 2016: New feature about York

    In June's Bulletin we announced that there would be a new feature on York added to the Ricardian Sites section of this website during the summer. This has now been uploaded and can be accessed here . The feature includes details about buildings and sites in the city that Richard III would have known together with other information of interest to Ricardians. The full text of the York Vellum is also included, this contains contemporary accounts of King Richard's post-coronation visit to York in 1483, during which time his son, Edward of Middleham, was created Prince of Wales. The vellum was presented to York Minster in July 1966, so it is a fitting commemoration of this event that we launch the York feature on its fiftieth anniversary.

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    23 June 2016: Richard III tops History Hot 100

    Richard III has come top of BBC History Magazine's 'History Hot 100' for the second year running. The results are published in July's edition of the magazine.

    'It’s great to see that King Richard is still topping the polls in the media. Let’s hope it continues and people start to read serious material about the subject. Who knows, given time, the public — and some historians — might one day get the message that Shakespeare's plays aren't to be trusted as history? As great drama but not history. Meanwhile, especially while Richard III lives in the popular imagination, The Society will continue to promote research into the life and times of this much maligned monarch' commented Society Chairman Phil Stone.

    You can read more here.

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    14 June 2016: King Richard III Visitor Centre Quotations

    It is with great pleasure that we see quotations about Richard III are now being applied to the walls of the King Richard III Visitor Centre in Leicester. The Society asked for them shortly after the Centre was opened. The quotes featured are:

    ' … for many a poor man hath suffered wrong many days, hath been relieved and helped by him … On my troth, I never liked the condition of any prince so well as his. God hath sent him to us for the weal of us all … ' Thomas Langton, Bishop of St. David's, Letter to a friend, September 1483.

    'The good reputation of his private life and public activities powerfully attracted the esteem of strangers.' Dominic Mancini, December 1483.

    'The most famous prince of blessed memory.' City of York records, October 1485.

    The quotes will be accompanied by a notice which reads:

    'So much of what has been written about Richard III dates from after his death, by those who never knew the man himself.The three quotes painted onto the walls in this stairwell were written during (or shortly after) his lifetime and they give us a glimpse of how Richard was spoken of in his own time. Kindly supported by the Richard III Society.'

    The display is being paid for by the Society.

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    14 May 2016: 'The Hollow Crown—The Wars of the Roses'

    The BBC’s series The Hollow Crown features William Shakespeare's history plays from Richard II to Richard III; the first cycle ending with Henry V was shown in 2012 to critical acclaim. The BBC is now broadcasting in the UK the final cycle — The Wars of the Roses — from Henry VI Part 1 to Richard III.

    The Shakespearean character ‘Richard III’ — played in the series by Benedict Cumberbatch — is apparently portrayed as a psychopath whose villainy comes about because of the violence he's seen as he is growing up. While it is not our role to interfere with artistic freedom, it needs to be strongly emphasised that these plays are fictional drama and not factual history.

    Benedict Cumberbatch read the Poet Laureate’s poem ‘Richard’ at King Richard’s reburial service last year and he is a collateral descendant of the king. In light of this, the Chairman of the Richard III Society has written to ask if he could publicly re-iterate that his portrayal of the king in The Hollow Crown is fictional and not related to the historical facts.

    Most people will know and understand that Shakespeare was a playwright not an historian, and that dramatic license often distorts facts and characters. For a full discussion about his play Richard III and its relation to the historical facts, click here.

    Following the discovery of Richard III’s remains and their honourable reburial in 2015, there has been a greater focus on the positive aspects of his character and his real achievements as king of England during his short reign; facts viewers of the The Hollow Crown should bear in mind whilst watching this latest portrayal of the fictional ‘Richard III’.

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    14 May 2016: No hunchback …

    Sue Wells' rebuttal to the Mail on Sunday regarding their article about the prosthetics used in the BBC's production of 'The Hollow Crown'.



    No Hunchback

    'The short piece by Chris Hastings in today's Mail on Sunday about the prosthetics used by Benedict Cumberbatch for his performance as Shakespeare’s fictional ‘Richard III’ is misleading. It implies that the real Richard III also had a 'hunchback'. This is untrue. He suffered from scoliosis, not kyphosis which can result in a hunchback. The king led an active life as an effective administrator and military commander; if he had a disability he clearly overcame it. It is time to end the lazy acquiescence with the Tudor and Shakespearean myths about Richard III: he was no hunchback and if he suffered from scoliosis that is no reason to denigrate him. We celebrate the achievements of our Paralympians and others who overcome disabilities. Let us do the same for Richard III.'

    Sue Wells

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    28 April 2016: Margaret of York: Princess of England, Duchess of Burgundy

    Margaret of York
    The Richard III and Yorkist History Trust
    has just published the first in a series of research monographs of recently completed doctoral theses on topics related to late medieval English History. 'Margaret of York' by Harry Schnitker looks at all these aspects of Margaret’s life including the women who influenced her, her support for Mary of Burgundy’s crucial Habsburg marriage, and her attempt to influence English politics by encouraging Yorkist pretenders during the reign of Henry VII. Margaret of York was the sister of Edward IV and Richard III.

    The Richard III and Yorkist History Trust is a charitable trust established by the Richard III Society in 1985 to further education and research related to the history of late-fifteenth-century England and to encourage the publication of such research.

    For further information about 'Margaret of York' and details of how to purchase the book (there is a special offer for Richard III Society members) click here.

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    30 March 2016: Motcomb Collection sale results

    The auction of the Motcomb Collection English Groats, took place on the 17th March. We have been able to obtain information on the prices achieved for the items featured in the catalogue and the auction house was pleased to report that Richard III items 'fared well overall'. The sale prices of the individual items are included in the list here and the auctioneers have kindly offered us some clarification around the prices shown as follows:

    'The hammer prices have 20% buyer’s premium added, which is why reports of auction sales sometimes seem inconsistent (£2,000 in one place, £2,400 in another!) There’s no right and wrong about this and we would normally report a price as either “hammer” or “incl. buyer’s premium” to make it clear. On the list attached the individual lots are all hammer prices while the sale total at the bottom is “including buyer’s premium'.

    The sales relating to coins from the reign of Richard III are shown at items 144 – 159.

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    26 March 2016: First anniversary of King Richard III's reburial

    King Richard III coat of arms
    The reburial service was an historic and moving occasion presided over by both the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Bishop of Leicester with many distinguished guests including HRH the Countess of Wessex, the Society's Patron HRH the Duke of Gloucester and HRH the Duchess of Gloucester. In his sermon the Bishop emphasised that ‘we come to give this King, and these mortal remains the dignity and honour denied to them in death.' The message from HM the Queen noted that ‘the reburial of King Richard III is an event of great national and international significance.’

    The reburial events in Leicester attracted worldwide interest with extensive media coverage. This, together with the sermons and eulogies given, invariably touched on positive aspects of King Richard III’s life and reign, emphasising his commitment to the fair administration of justice and the legal reforms of his only parliament. As a result, the public’s perceptions of the king have been changed for the better.

    The discovery and reburial of King Richard III’s remains have raised his profile, provided new avenues for research and increased opportunities to advance the case for a reappraisal of his life and character. In this context, we again acknowledge the achievement of Philippa Langley MBE and the Looking for Richard Team, without whose efforts the King's remains would not have been found.

    As we reflect on this first anniversary, we can all take comfort in the knowledge that after half a millennium this anointed king of England rests at last in peace and honour in consecrated ground in the heart of his kingdom.

    The Richard III Society
    26 March 2016

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    26 March 2016: Photo-mosaic of Richard III revealed

    Photo-mosaic of Richard created with photographs sent in
    Photo-mosaic of Richard created with photographs sent in
    On 26th March 2016 the King Richard III Visitor Centre in Leicester unveiled a photo-mosaic of King Richard III to commemorate the first anniversary of his reinternment. The image was created using photographs sent to the Visitor Centre which were taken during the Reinternment Week of 2015. Contributions were received from members of the public, Leicester Cathedral, University of Leicester, Leicester City Council and Leicestershire County Council.

    Close up of photo-mosaic, showing individual photographs
    Close up of photo-mosaic, showing individual photographs
    The photo-mosaic forms part of the Visitor Centre’s exhibition ‘Reinterment: One Year On’ and will be on display until 2nd May 2016. For more information please go to the King Richard III Vistor Centre site.

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    March 2016: The Fotheringhay Church Appeal

    An update on the Fotheringhay Church Appeal from Phil Stone: 'There is great news on the matter of the repairs to Fotheringhay Church. The H B Allen Trust has made a grant of £700,000 to replace, rather than repair, the roof!

    'As a result of the grant, the project has been enlarged by The Friends of Fotheringhay Church to accommodate this offer and the total amount needed has risen from £600,000 to £1.2m.

    'As £1m has already been raised in cash and pledges — including the H B Allen grant — just £200,000 is still needed. Consequently, the appeal is most certainly NOT closed. Please continue to give if you can.

    'The administrators of the Appeal wish to record their deep gratitude for the ongoing generous donations which they have received from members of the Richard lll Society, whose contributions have given them great encouragement!'

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    March 2016: English Groats Sale

    A collection of English groats — The Motcombe Collection — is due to be auctioned at Sotheby's in London on Thursday 17 March. The collection includes groats — designed to be worth four pennies each — dating from the reigns of Edward I (1272-1307) through to Queen Mary (1553-1554) encompassing the reign of Richard III and including those coins those struck in the name of Edward V.

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    9 October 2015: Philippa Langley and John Ashdown-Hill honoured

    Philippa Langley at Buckingham Palace
    The Press Association
    The Richard III Society congratulates Philippa Langley and Dr John Ashdown-Hill on their investiture at Buckingham Palace on 9 October when they were awarded the MBE by HM The Queen.

    Philippa said 'After discovering a king in a car park, it is almost as surreal to be at the Palace today to receive this award. It marks the end of a gruelling ten year journey and I would like to thank all those who put me forward for this recognition and honour. I'm delighted that the discovery of King Richard has ignited worldwide interest in his story. For the very first time, this historical figure is being read about widely to understand the facts surrounding his life and times and to question the received wisdom and ages-old mythology that has enveloped him for centuries.'

    Society Chairman Phil Stone commented 'The Society congratulate Philippa Langley and John Ashdown-Hill on their momentous day'.

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    40th Anniversary of the Greater Manchester Branch

    King Henry V at the Battle of Agincourt
    Helen Ashburn, secretary of GMB
    at the anniversary dinner
    2015 marks the 40th Anniversary of the foundation of the Greater Manchester Branch. The original meetings were held in the appropriately named Duke of York public house in Stockport and in the mid 1980s we moved to The Boars Head and finally to The Arden Arms, also both in Stockport. One of the highlights of the Branch in 1985 was the Quincentenary celebrations in Leicester which were very well attended.

    In 1976 the first edition of the Branch journal Semper Fidelis was published and we still endeavour to produce new editions, although not as often as we would like. Our on-line newsletter Boaring News now keeps members up to date with meetings and interesting topics.

    Over the years we have invited a diverse range of speakers to our meetings and have enjoyed numerous visits and weekend breaks to places of interest. Inevitably, membership has had its ups and downs, especially during the 1990s but I am pleased to say that since the discovery of Richard, membership has increased considerably and we now have an active and friendly Branch.

    I have had the privilege of being Branch Secretary for 23 years and I was very proud that we were able to hold an Anniversary Dinner on 20th June this year to mark this important landmark in the Branch's history. In March we also planted two sapling oak trees in Leicestershire: one to celebrate our Anniversary and the other to mark and honour the reburial of King Richard III.

    On a personal note, I would like to thank all our Branch members for their support and friendship and know that they all live up to our journal motto, Semper Fidelis 'Always Faithful'.

    Helen Ashburn, Branch Secretary

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    10 September 2015: Facial Reconstruction revised

    Facial Reconstruction revised
    image courtesy of Carl Vivian
    Leicester University
    On Thursday, 10th September, Dr Turi King, Prof Caroline Wilkinson and Dr Phil Stone met at the King Richard III Visitor Centre in Leicester to discuss King Richard's hair colour. Although the DNA analysis has suggested he had blond hair and blue eyes in childhood, the colour of the hair on the facial reconstruction needs to be what would have been seen in adulthood. Using the portrait in the Society of Antiquaries of London as a guide, the hair is now a mid brown with a slight wave. Prof Wilkinson, Dr King and Phil Stone hope that this will be "the definitive image of the reconstruction with both scientific and historical evidence to support the hair colour and style."

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    31 Jul - 3 Aug 2015<: 600th Anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt Conference

    King Henry V at the Battle of Agincourt
    King Henry V at the Battle of Agincourt
    The 600th Anniversary of The Battle of Agincourt Conference 2015 is being organised by the University of Southampton and will take place Friday 31 July – Monday 3 August 2015.

    There are a number of prestigious keynote speakers including Professor Bertrand Schnerb (University of Lille III), Dr Andrew Ayton (University of Hull) , Dr Alexandra Hildred (Mary Rose Trust), and Dr Thom Richardson (Royal Armouries). Dr Ian Mortimer will be giving a special public lecture on Saturday 1 August on 'The Meaning of War', and in an after dinner speech at the conference dinner, Professor Anne Curry (University of Southampton) will be reflecting on 'Life with Agincourt'.

    There will be a very special event on Sunday 2 August with privileged visits to the Mary Rose, Porchester Castle, Titchfield Barn (a building which Henry V would have seen in 1415 and which is now a theatre), and Titchfield Abbey, along with a conference dinner at the Royal Armouries Fort Nelson, which includes a private tour of the artillery collection. There will be a wide range of talks and papers and special events including visit to the defences of Southampton.

    Book your ticket here.

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    June 2015: Moira Habberjam

    The Richard III Society is deeply saddened to learn of the passing of one of its vice-Presidents, Moira Habberjam, on 25 June. Moira Habberjam
    Moira receiving the Robert Hamblin Award for 2008
    Moira devoted many decades to the work of the Society both as secretary of the Yorkshire Branch and as a valued member of the Research Committee. Her skills as a palaeographer and Latinist were of immense value to the Society's research agenda, as evidenced by her vital contribution to the success of the Logge Wills Project. There will be an obituary and other tributes in September's Ricardian Bulletin. In the meantime, we offer our sincere condolences to her husband, Gerald, and the rest of her family.

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    12 June 2015: The Queen's Birthday Honours List

    Philippa Langley and Dr John Ashdown-Hill have been awarded the MBE in recognition of their services to 'the Exhumation and Identification of Richard III' (London Gazette) in the 2015 Queen's Birthday Honours. The Richard III Society congratulates them both for this public recognition of their hard work, research and determination. See our Press release.

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    8 April 2015: After Leicester

    The week of the reburial of King Richard III is now behind us and we can all take much solace from the knowledge that the king now lies in peace and honour reburied in the consecrated ground of Leicester Cathedral.

    The eyes of the world were on Leicester that week and it was very satisfying to note that the media coverage, and the sermons and eulogies given, all included references to positive aspects of King Richard's life and reign. His commitment to the fair administration of justice and the legal reforms of his only parliament were cited by many commentators. It was also pleasing to hear actors such as Sir Anthony Sher and Robert Lindsay publicly stating that Shakespeare was great drama but bad history.

    The question many are now posing is where do we go from here? How much has the discovery of King Richard's remains changed or challenged traditional accounts of the king? Clearly we have found out a great deal about his appearance and diet and also about the fatal wounds he suffered at Bosworth. Most importantly we know that he had the condition known as scoliosis, and this evidence allows us to dismiss the traditional story that the king was a hunchback. The Society intends to be particularly proactive in challenging misapprehensions about scoliosis and to champion a more informed and positive view of the condition and how Richard managed it in less sympathetic times than our own.

    As we have done for the past ninety years, the Society will continue to seek a reassessment of King Richard's life and character. For this to have substance it must be based on the evidence that can only be found in the surviving contemporary records. To find, access, transcribe and interpret these records in the proper context of the time and circumstances in which they were written, requires a considerable range of skills. Foreign archives—aside from the language issues—present a considerable challenge in this regard, which means a focussed and skills-based approach will be essential to the success of any archival research.

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    4 March 2015: Visitor Centre Nomination

    The Society is delighted to learn that the King Richard III Visitor Centre in Leicester has been KRIII Visitor Centreshortlisted for one of the 2015 Museums and Heritage awards following a search led by the Guardian Cultural Professionals Network for the most inspiring museum or heritage visitor attraction of the past 12 months. There will now be a public vote to select the overall winner. Voting closes at midnight on Friday 20 March 2015, and the winner will be announced at the national Museums and Heritage Awards Ceremony on Wednesday 29 April. The Culture Pros Pick award went to the People's History Museum.

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    6 January 2015: BBC Radio 4 'Great Lives'

    King Richard III featured as the 'Great Life' in the 6 January 2015 episode. For those not familiar with the programme, this is Radio 4's biography series first broadcast in 2001 and is currently presented by journalist Matthew Parris. A guest is asked to nominate a person they believe is deserving of the title and, together with an expert, often a biographer, the life is discussed during the 28-minute programme.

    Society member Philippa Langley, who instigated and led the search for the king through the Looking for Richard Project, while Annette Carson, a fellow member of the Society and author of Richard III: The Maligned King, appeared as the expert witness to provide historical background. Philippa said 'It was a great honour to nominate Richard III as a 'Great Life' for BBC Radio 4's iconic programme. I hope that the topics Annette and I were able to cover in the time given may offer a glimpse of the man from the historic record, so that the listeners may be interested to discover more about the last Plantagenet'.

    A podcast of the program is available here.

    Towards the end of the programme, reference is made to the coffining of King Richard's remains. For further detail, please see the Leicester Cathedral statement.

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    31 October 2014: Reburial of King Richard III

    We are pleased to announce that following on-going discussions the final details for the reburial of Richard lll have been agreed and a number of our concerns addressed.

    These concerns were raised at a meeting with Leicester Cathedral and the reburial management team in late June. In some cases our view did not prevail, but in others we were more successful. In particular we were able to secure the support of the Cathedral Fabric Commission for England on a number of significant issues.

    We can confirm that three key matters where we sought clarification have been successfully resolved as a result of our discussions. Firstly, the white rose of York will be engraved onto four tiles on the floor at strategic points around the tomb. Secondly, King Richard's mortal remains will be laid out in an articulated manner within the lead lining of the coffin. A rosary will also be placed within the coffin. Thirdly, the Roman Catholic Church is to have representation at significant points during the reburial week, including the presence and prayers of Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the Archbishop of Westminster.

    Funeral Crown
    The funeral crown commissioned and donated by John Ashdown-Hill
    The funeral crown commissioned and donated by John Ashdown-Hill will feature during the reburial services. Details here are awaiting final confirmation.
    Regrettably, one key issue for us did not reach a satisfactory conclusion. Our request that the king's remains be placed in their coffin in a place of sanctity was not agreed and we remain unconvinced by the argument that the bones are too fragile to be moved. This will be a disappointment to the many who feel that this would have been the proper ritual for a late-mediaeval king.

    However given that many of our concerns have been addressed we will continue to work in a constructive manner with Leicester Cathedral. We look forward to working with and supporting all those involved with the events of next March to help ensure that King Richard is reinterred with the with dignity and honour due to an anointed king of England.

    The Looking for Richard Project will be making a separate statement.

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    22 August 2014: Richard remembered

    Two events took place in Leicestershire on Friday 22 August: In the morning there was a short service at Ambion Hill; and in the afternoon, a choral Evensong at Leicester Cathedral.

    Service at Ambion Hill

    In a short, but moving service on Ambion Hill, the Bishop of Leicester welcomed those present:

    Guard of Honour
    Guard of Honour leading the party to the sundial on Ambion Hill.
    Centre, carrying the crown, is Dominic Smee, who recently featured
    in the Channel 4 programme 'Richard III: The New Evidence',
    and who acted as the king's 'body double'.
    We meet in the presence of God to remember and commemorate those who died on this day in 1485 at the Battle of Bosworth.

    We remember in sorrow those lives ended at this place and those whose families were torn apart through death and suffering. We pray for our nation whose story was altered at this place; we repent of our continued need for armed conflict and war, and commit ourselves to work in penitence and faith for reconciliation between the nations, that all people may, together, live in freedom, justice and peace.

    Richard Knox of Leicestershire County Council spoke of the events of 22 August and the response was made by Dr Phil Stone:

    Arrival procession
    Jennifer, Baroness Gretton, the Lord Lieutenant of Leicestershire, followed by the
    Revd Julia Hargreaves, Team Vicar of the Bosworth & Sheepy group of churches
    and the Rt Revd Tim Stevens, Bishop of Leicester.
    History was made near here that August morning in 1485. With the death of Richard III, the last English king to die in battle, the reign of the royal House of York came to an end.

    There are several contemporary accounts of the battle we now call Bosworth and all agree that Richard III was no coward. Instead of calling for a horse, he fought with great courage to the very end and fell fighting on the field like 'a most spirited and courageous prince, after receiving many mortal wounds'.

    We can imagine that others who fell, including John Howard, the duke of Norfolk, Richard Ratcliffe, Robert Brackenbury and Rob Percy, as well as others unnamed, also suffered terrible wounds, though it is to be hoped that, unlike King Richard, they weren't subjected to the humiliations that we learn were heaped upon him.

    Gathering at the sundial
    Richard Knox and Phil Stone at the sundial.
    War is never pretty, never noble, no matter how some might try to depict it. It's brutal, barbaric and inhuman. In a couple of hours, over a thousand were slain on that terrible summer's day. As we lay our roses, both the white and the red, let us remember them all. They were men like us. That August morning, as the sun shone, they suffered and they died, fighting for a cause, though some, perhaps, may not have understood what that cause was. For many, as we have just heard, their names are lost but they would have been fathers, husbands, brothers and, certainly, they were all somebody's son. They left loved-ones somewhere to mourn their passing and grieve for their loss.Arrival procession
    Sir Peter Soulsby, Leicester's City Mayor (left) and archaeologist Richard Buckley (right).

    This year, 2014, we also remember the start of the First World War. Let us pray that one day soon there will be an end to war, if not in our lifetime, perhaps, but in that of our children. We will lay our roses for the fallen of Bosworth, but, as we do, let us remember everyone, man, woman or child, who has ever died because of war or conflict.

    Evensong at Leicester Cathedral

    At 3 pm on Friday afternoon, many of those at Bosworth in the morning, met again at Leicester Cathedral for a choral Evensong to mark the anniversary of the death of King Richard. Towards the end of the service, Richard Smith and Sally Henshaw, chairman and secretary respectively of the Leicestershire branch of the Society, presented the flags, designed by the College of Arms, to the Cathedral. As the presentation was being made, Society Secretary, Dave Wells, read to the congregation whilst his wife Susan, also Secretary, laid white roses:

    On this day 529 years ago, Richard, monarch of this realm, yielded his crown, his kingdom and his life in battle at Bosworth Field.

    We are gathered now to remember that day, to commend again to God's keeping both Richard and all who gave up their lives, and to commit ourselves to live peaceably, bound by all due loyalties.

    Bequests by the late Margaret York, a Leicestershire teacher, who died in 2011, to both the local branch and the parent Society, together with an additional amount from the Society, funded the flags. Philippa Langley, founder of the Looking for Richard Project, whose campaign led to the discovery of the king's remains in 2012, suggested the idea of this gift to Leicester Cathedral as the most appropriate utilisation of Margaret's generosity.

    King Richard III's banner    Flag of the Arms of England

    At both services, although the emphasis was the commemoration of King Richard and all who fell at Bosworth, there were prayers for all those who have suffered, and who sadly, continue to suffer through military conflict.

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    7 August: Reburial dates announced

    Leicester Cathedral have confirmed the dates for King Richard's reburial in a week-long programme which will begin on Sunday 22 March when the king's body, duly coffined, leaves the University of Leicester for Bosworth 'remembering the life the King lost and his journey in 1485. Villages related to Richard III's last days will be included', remembering key moments of those days. The cortege will arrive at the Cathedral in the early evening and the king will be received into the care of the Church.

    King Richard will lie in the Cathedral for three days for the public to pay its respects. The reburial will take place on the morning of Thursday, 26 March. The following day the tomb will be revealed and on Saturday a service will be held marking the end of Richard's journey.

    The Cathedral have also announced that HRH The Duke of Gloucester will be patron of the Cathedral's Appeal in support of their plans to reinter King Richard.

    The Society is also planning its own events in and around Leicester during the week. There will be brief details in the September Bulletin but we can confirm that there will be a special service held at the Cathedral for members on Monday 23 March 2015. You can also see the Society's Press Release.

    The Society is not responsible for the organisation of the arrangements for the reburial of the remains of Richard III or the services taking place other than the service on the 23rd. Attendance at the other services will be by invitation of the Dean. At this stage, we do not know whether any places will be made available to the Society for any of these services. If places do become available to the Society we will advise all members worldwide via a special postal mailing and inviting applications which will be subject to a ballot. At the same time we will give details of our own programme and how to apply for places. Until such time, we are unable to take names for inclusion on any waiting list regarding allocation of tickets and would ask you to wait for our further communication.

    If you are not a member of the Society, we regret that we are unable to assist you but suggest that your enquiry could be redirected to the authorities at Leicester Cathedral.

    Read the Leicester Cathedral announcement.

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    23 June: Meeting with Reburial Project Team in Leicester

    A meeting took place on Monday 23rd June at the request of the Richard III Society and the Looking for Richard Project, with members of the King Richard III Reburial Project Team. The meeting was constructive and conducted in a spirit of mutual goodwill, co-operation and reconciliation. The Reburial Project Team undertook to look in further detail at a number of the points raised and to respond back in due course.

    It can, however, be confirmed that the design of the Swaledale fossil stone tomb with the incised cross on will go ahead as stated by the Cathedral on 16 June and as approved by the Cathedral Fabrics Commission. Discussions about the design did reveal that the lettering around the plinth, King Richard's name, dates, and motto Loyaltie me lie, together with four small boars, will be cut out of the Kilkenny marble stone and will appear white, not black as shown on the CGI image. Of course the incised cross will remain a disappointment to some but it was emphasised that the deep cut of the cross will allow light to flood through it, achieved through specially designed lighting in the newly created ambulatory. This is an interesting concept, which does require some imagination to visualise, but we are assured it will work.

    Phil Stone and Wendy Moorhen

    Leicester Cathedral's tomb design

    17 June 2014: We are pleased that plans for the honourable reburial of King Richard III in Leicester Cathedral next spring are progressing.

    We also note the latest design for the planned tomb, which shows the replacement of the large white rose motif inlay with a dark Kilkenny stone plinth. Some of our members will have reservations about the design, and whilst we understand the rationale behind the tomb's design its starkness will not appeal to all. There is a particular need for clearly identifiable white roses within its design. However we welcome the fact that King Richard's coffin will be made by Michael Ibsen, a direct collateral descendent of the king.

    We hope that some of the issues we have with the latest tomb design can be resolved amicably, and a meeting with the cathedral authorities to discuss these matters is scheduled.

    It is inevitable that there will be conflicting views about the design of the tomb, but it is important these do not detract from the solemnity and dignity of the reburial. To this end we will continue to work positively with Leicester Cathedral. The announcement by Leicester Cathedral

    The BBC News website quotes Marion Hare, who is the vice chairman of the Leicester Branch of the Society—not the vice chairman of the Society as a whole—and therefore her views are personal and should not necessarily be attributed to the Society.

    Marion Hare has recently been distressed by being misquoted on the BBC website. Marion made it very clear to the interviewer that she is the Vice Chair of the Leicestershire Branch, not of the Society as a whole. Her views on the tomb have also been misrepresented. She liked the design of the tomb that the cathedral first put forward with a simple cross on the top, feeling that the modern design reflected the era in which Richard was discovered. She would rather that design had been used than the tomb with the deeply cut cross.

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    23 May: Judicial Review Judgement

    At 10 am this morning (23 May) in Court 3, Royal Courts of Justice, London, Lady Justice Hallett handed down the Judgement of the Judicial Review held on 13 and 14 March this year before herself, Mr Justice Ouseley and Mr Justice Haddon-Cave.

    The application by the Plantagenet Alliance challenged

    1. The Secretary of State for Justice that the Exhumation Licence granted on 3 September 2012 was issued 'without consulting, or attaching requiring the licencee to consult, as to how [or where] the remains of Richard III should be appropriately re-interred in the event that they were found.
    2. The Decision of the Secretary of State for Justice on 4 February 2013 and subsequently 'not to re-visit the grant of the Licence once it became clear the University would not carry out an appropriate consultation'.
    3. The Decision of the University of Leicester on 4 February 2013 'to begin making arrangements for the reburial of the remains of Richard III at Leicester Cathedral'.

    The judgement reads 'there are no public law grounds for the Court interfering with the decisions in question. In the result, therefore, the Claimant's application for Judicial Review is dismissed'.

    A postscript was added:

    'Since Richard III's exhumation on 5 September 2012, passions have been roused and much ink has been split. Issues relating to his life and death and place of reburial have been exhaustively examined and debated. The Very Reverend David Monteith, the Dean of Leicester Cathedral, has explained the considerable efforts and expenditure invested by the Cathedral in order to create a lasting burial place "as befits an anointed King". We agree that it is time for Richard III to be given as dignified reburial, and finally laid to rest.'

    This judgement upholding the original licence granted to the University of Leicester by the Ministry of Justice now means that it is the hands of the university to follow through the requirements of that licence and they confirm that the reburial of King Richard III will go ahead as planned in Leicester Cathedral. The Society will work constructively with the cathedral to help bring this about. Consideration, however, should also now be given to the need for his remains to be removed to an appropriate place of sanctity before their re-burial.

    The full judgement is available online.

    The Richard III Society's Chairman, Phil Stone, commented 'I am very pleased that there has been a clear cut decision. It means that we can now move forward and reinter King Richard with the dignity and sanctity that is due to an anointed king of England. Understandably, the judgement will be a disappointment to the Plantagenet Alliance and its supporters, and indeed to many of our own members, but I hope that we can now all put the disagreements behind us and join together to honour King Richard when he is laid to rest in Leicester Cathedral.'

    Executive Committee

    13/14 March: Judicial Review—Royal Courts of Justice, London

    © Wendy Moorhen, 2014

    Royal Courts of Justice, London
    The Judicial Review, postponed from 26 November 2013, was again heard before Lady Justice Hallett, Mr Justice Ouseley and Mr Justice Haddon-Cave. The proceedings were not about where King Richard III should be buried but whether the defendants, the Secretary of State for Justice and the University of Leicester, had a duty at common law to consult about where and how the King's remains should be reinterred. The action had been brought by the Plantagenet Alliance, a group of fifteen collateral descendants of the king, who believed they should have been consulted and in August 2013 Mr Justice Haddon-Cave judged their case was arguable and granted permission for the proceedings.

    The Alliance specifically challenged the decision of the Secretary of State for Justice who, on 3 September 2012, granted the Exhumation Licence without any consultation, their subsequent decision on 4 February 2013 not to re-visit the grant of the Licence after the identification of King Richard and the decision of the University on 4 February 2014 to begin making arrangements for the reburial of the remains of the King in Leicester Cathedral. Counsel for the Claimant, Gerard Clarke, spent Thursday morning making his submissions and outlined his thoughts on the type of consultation that could be undertaken and emphasised his client was only asking for the right to be consulted. Lady Justice Hallett and Mr Justice Ouseley frequently questioned Mr Clarke and in some instances pressed him for specific answers. Unfortunately some of Mr Clarke's statements were considered dubious and which provoked a protest from the public gallery by Philippa Langley. Lady Justice Hallett asked for a written statement from Philippa and the Judges retired for a short interval and on their return announced they would accept the statement but no further submissions would be allowed. Lady Justice Hallett graciously acknowledged that the Court was only sitting because of Philippa's endeavours.

    After lunch it was the turn of James Eadie QC on behalf of the Secretary of State for Justice. Mr Eadie dealt with five legal principals of common law and whether or not there was a duty for his client to consult. For an hour he cited case after case, precedent after precedent, point of law after point of law and appeared to demolish the Claimant's case. He concluded that there was no statutory duty to consult, no promise to consult and no established practice to consult.

    The final submission of the day was from Anya Proops on behalf of the University of Leicester. Ms Proops stated that the University should not have been named as a defendant and had no duty whatsoever to consult. She allowed that if there was a duty to consult it rested with the Secretary of State for Justice.

    The final submission was made on Friday morning by Andrew Sharland QC on behalf of Leicester City Council. The Council had, as reported in the December Bulletin, applied to be an interested party in the Judicial Review and during the proceedings on 26 November they were made a third defendant and the Review was subsequently adjourned to await the new submissions but not before the City Council undertook to hold a consultation. In a surprise move a few weeks later the Council abandoned their undertaking to consult. This was frustrating as the whole matter could have been concluded by a judgement after the November hearing and without the considerable extra costs of the present hearing. Lady Justice Hallett commented there would be monetary repercussions! Mr Sharland's submission was that the City Council had no role in the reburial of King Richard. They had no statutory right to consult. The University of Leicester had the Licence and rights and they had been charged to keep the remains safely, privately and decently, which they had done.

    As Counsel for the Claimant, Mr Clarke concluded the hearing with his response to the Defendants' submissions and there was discussion with the Judges regarding who could be consulted and it was recorded, in no particular order, HM The Queen, the collateral descendants of King Richard, the Church of England, the Catholic Church, the citizens of Leicester and York, and those members of the public who were interested. The proceedings were closed with the announcement by Lady Justice Hallett that they would consider the submissions and would hope to reach a judgement in the next four to six weeks. This is not an enviable task, especially considering the several hundred, if not thousands of pages of documents, contained in the lever arch files which sat in front of the several legal teams.

    What might that judgement be? It would be wrong to speculate but perhaps just the observation that Mr Eadie's defence was awesome in terms of legal precedent and point of law but at the end of the day the Judges are faced with an absolutely unprecedented, and probably unique occurrence, how and where do you reinter the remains of an anointed king of England? Perhaps you just throw out the rule book!

    I would like to share one personal reflection after listening to the submissions and arguments. The Counsels' for the Secretary of State for Justice, the University of Leicester and Leicester City Council all denied their clients' duty to consult and yet, at one stage or another, they had all considered consultation!

    I should perhaps mention that it would be challenging to provide a more in-depth summary of the Judicial Review due to the difficulties of hearing the speakers from the public area, the incessant and disruptive arrivals and departures of visitors to the public areas (although the opportunity to wander in and out of sitting courts is a wonderful facet of our heritage) and the fact that many of the submissions and arguments related to documents in the 'bundles' which the Counsels frequently referred to and which were, of course, not available to the general public.

    Where does this leave the Society? In limbo for a while? However, we are no further behind than we were before the review resumed and we can now look forward to a possible conclusion to the legal arguments. After that, who knows? We continue to wait and see.

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    27 February: On the genome sequencing of Richard III

    Earlier this year, the University of Leicester announced that it plans to sequence the genome of Richard III's DNA. In time, this will mean that we can all know a lot more about the man—his eye and hair colour, the nature of his scoliosis, and something about his family.

    Inevitably, members of the Society are divided on the issue of further testing on the remains of King Richard. Messages have been received expressing both concern and approval. Whether one approves or disagrees, it must be remembered that, once the excavation began and the subsequent events were started, the Society no longer had any control. The Richard III Society is not the custodian of the remains and Society funds paid only for the dig and the facial reconstruction. The scientific testing has been paid for by others, including Leicester University.

    The chairman has now spoken with the team from the University and been assured that the amount of material required for the genome testing was 'very small'.

    An analogy can be made with the bones in an urn in Westminster Abbey, the alleged Princes, and the fact that further testing has not been available. Many people have been asking for them to be the subject of modern analysis on the basis that it is owed to future generations to discover as much as possible. It hasn't been allowed for the Abbey bones, but it can be done for King Richard.

    Understandable concern has been expressed about the ethics of the project because it involves the remains of an anointed king, but whether king or a peasant, it makes no difference provided the remains are treated in a serious and respectful way.

    Michael Ibsen, the named living collateral descendant who gave one of the samples of DNA used to confirm the remains as being those of Richard III, has not objected to this further testing on his late sixteen times great uncle. Indeed, he is participating in the project.

    For those who are against the further testing, there are at least two on-line petitions which can be accessed for you to express your choice.

    There are many arguments for and against further testing but it should be remembered that, according to its aims, the Richard III Society is "to promote in every possible way research into the life and times of Richard III". It is our responsibility to uphold this aim and to secure a reassessment of his life and reputation.

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    11 February: 2nd Battle of Tewkesbury, 2014

    Tewkesbury Abbey July 2007
    Courtesy of Simon Fogden
    A lot has happened since the last report, though we're still not the owners of the Gastons! The bid date has been and gone, though we don't know what happened as there's been silence. This isn't a bad sign. The Governors have to abide by the Charity Commission rules, and they have to demonstrate that they've achieved best value in the sale. An independent surveyor has to audit what they've done and confirm this. We're hoping that the Governors will agree that there is sufficient common ground between their objectives and ours for a different set of rules to apply, and that we can jointly apply to the Charity Commission to agree an independent valuation for sale to Tewkesbury Battlefield Society.

    We've had lots of local coverage, in the press, radio and television. We've also had national coverage on the BBC news on Sunday 2 February. The latter has produced a number of quite significant, and potentially very useful contacts, plus a great deal of support. We're hoping that all this translates into donations! We've set up a Just Giving site, with two options: to donate to the purchase fund, where money will be returned if we're unsuccessful, or the fighting fund (the photo half way down the page) for funds to help with expenses in making the bid. You can also donate by cheque: Cheques should be made out to 'Tewkesbury Battlefield Society', with either 'Fighting Fund' or 'Gastons Fund' written on the back, with your name and address. We have collecting boxes in premises all over Tewkesbury, or send your cheque to The Tewkesbury Battlefield Society, PO Box 147, Tewkesbury, GL20 9AP. Alternatively, people will be setting up fundraising events, and making use of the generous offers we've had. Matching dates and venues is taking a bit of time!

    It must be stressed that to date we've spent nothing. Everything has been done by volunteers or donated. And thanks to supporters, we've got quite a few leads to grant-giving bodies which we'll be sifting through shortly and deciding which to apply for, for what purpose and when. Some of these will be for work after the purchase, and some to support the purchase. Big among these is the potential to get a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, who we're in contact with. As the six months moratorium is ticking away, this is work we need to get on with quickly. We desperately need an experienced fund-raiser to co-ordinate all the fund-raising activities, and to decide where our efforts are best directed. The use of the fields once they're in the hands of the community is something else we're working on. This will be important for grant applications. Uses fall into four main categories; historical, ecological and the creative arts. There are lots of possibilities in all these areas. We intend to establish a representative management committee to co-ordinate both the work needed to restore and maintain the fields and make sure that the various informal and formal uses don't conflict. An appropriate lowintensity agricultural use has to be the principle use, and this can easily be made compatible with other things.

    Every organisation we've spoken to has been enthusiastic about the potential for the Gastons. This is reassuring, but we've a lot to do yet to find the money and to buy the site!

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    26 November: Judicial Review (adjourned)

    © Annette Carson, 2013

    Important Note: The following summary is a personal impression of the events in the High Court which the writer attended as a member of the public. They are by no means a verbatim transcription, and indeed from my seat at the back it was quite difficult to hear the arguments. Please accept my apologies for any inaccuracies, and do not quote this account as authoritative.

    Heard before:

    Lady Justice Hallett

    Mr Justice Ouseley

    Mr Justice Haddon-Cave

    For the Plantagenet Alliance (claimant): Gerard Clarke

    For the Secretary of State for Justice (first defendant): James Eadie, QC

    For the University of Leicester (second defendant): Anya Proops

    For Leicester City Council: Norman Palmer, QC

    The proceedings opened, to our surprise, not with arguments for the Plantagenet Alliance's case but with a wholly unexpected application by Mr Clarke, acting on their behalf, seeking the Court's permission to join Leicester City Council to the existing two defendants in the case. It was only later in the course of the morning that Mr Clarke spoke the words which he had doubtless originally prepared as his opening remarks: that this was the most extraordinary Judicial Review in modern times, and practically unrepeatable. As such it was probably non-precedential. The Court was being asked to decide whether the defendants had failed to conduct the due consultation that was called for in the case of the reburial of the human remains of a King of England.

    The first business of the day, however, concerned itself with the request by the Plantagenet Alliance (PA) to have Leicester City Council (LCC) joined as co-defendant. The Council had very recently made a written submission to the effect that it considered itself to be the custodian of the remains. Mr Clarke said that the LCC had a reasonable case to claim custody, but had been persuaded by the University of Leicester (UoL) to take a background role. The Council now says it merely suspended its decision-making process, and proposes to return to it after the conclusion of the Judicial Review.

    Adjournment of Judicial Review
    John Ashdown-Hill, Annette Carson and Philippa Langley
    outside the Royal Courts of Justice following
    the adjournment of the Judicial Reivew
    The PA's concern was that in returning to its decision-making role once the Court had given judgment, there was no reason to suppose that the Council would then carry out the consultation sought by the claimants. What if, after the judicial process, the LCC simply maintains that it has legal control of the disposal of the remains? This was the PA's main argument for not leaving the LCC merely as an interested party, but for wishing to have it joined as a co-defendant – so that it, too, would be bound by the ruling of the Court. [There are already two named interested parties in the case: Leicester Cathedral and York Minster.]

    Interestingly, at this point the LCC was observed to have clearly broken ranks with the University, in that it disputes the UoL's role and claims to have overall direction of the matter, in its capacity both as the land-owner and as a public authority.

    Given that this submission was received only on 19 November, the PA needed to hear the LCC's arguments in full in order to determine whether the target of the Judicial Review should rather be (or should include) the LCC. Asked why this was not considered at the outset, Mr Clarke stated that they could not have known of the LCC's role because the public position on the remains was adopted by the UoL in February 2013.

    Lady Justice Hallett sought for other remedies as she was well aware that to consider the joining proposal now would almost certainly prevent the conclusion of the hearing, for which only this one day had been set aside. She added that there was now further disagreement relating to how the remains should be laid out – whether they should be placed in their anatomical position in the coffin.

    There was considerable discussion as to the LCC's history in the matter and its stated willingness to conduct consultations with various parties, some of whom were mentioned. Mr Justice Ouseley evinced an ongoing interest in what consideration it had given to other reburial locations: he had noticed that the LCC's early intentions to consult on them had been dropped. In the end Mr Palmer, acting for the LCC, stated that the Council was firmly committed to a policy of consultation in respect of the remains.

    Discussion also centred on the exhumation licence issued by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ). The PA was surprised that an expedition order had been made, i.e. an order to expedite compliance with the terms of the licence. For readers who are unaware, the licence, issued in September 2012, permits the exhumation of remains and gives the licensee responsibility to arrange for their reburial within two years. It was applied for by University of Leicester Archaeological Services (ULAS) but issued to the UoL as licensee.

    The question was asked whether the Secretary of State had the power to amend the order as to the two-year deadline. Mr Eadie, acting for the Ministry of Justice, replied that the MoJ does not assert the power to do anything other than to issue such a licence in the proper form.

    Mr Clarke envisaged that in the event that the PA succeeded, the Secretary of State would probably issue a fresh licence. The problem facing the Court was: what if the LCC then objected to it? The PA wanted to avoid any further legal challenges in the future. The LCC's statement said that it had ceased its own consultations because they were not required by the MoJ's licence. It had also made its position clear that it was in favour of reburying Richard III in Leicester.

    The Justices then decided to take a brief adjournment, the issue to be determined being whether the LCC has a role to play in the case and whether it is appropriate to join them as co-defendants. On returning they ruled that the LCC would now be co-defendants, which meant that the hearing must be adjourned to await new submissions. Lady Justice Hallett wanted to schedule the hearing for as early as possible in the new year, but they were looking at two days in the Court calendar as well as time to prepare, so they could not predict how soon this would be.

    It was established that there would be no problem amending the original exhumation licence to provide a slightly longer time. Mr Eadie did not appear to have been briefed as to several aspects relating to the licence, and answered "Pass" when asked by Mr Justice Ouseley whether the phrase 'burial ground' had any geographical limits, and whether it signified an exterior burial site or one within a building.

    Meanwhile Mr Palmer had taken new instructions from the LCC and gave the Court an undertaking that the Council was prepared to embark on consultations – now. Ms Proops, for the UoL, said the University was bound by the terms of the licence as issued and had no room for manoeuvre, otherwise they would be in breach of the law. Mr Palmer for the Council disagreed on this point of law.

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    2 October: The Search for Richard III: The Kings Grave

    The Search for Richard III The King's Grave
    Philippa and Mike's book, The Search for Richard III: The King's Grave, was published on 2 October. They have concluded an extremely successful country-wide book tour with packed audiences who were interested to learn more about the real Richard III.


    Philippa gave an interview to the Daily Mail which appeared in their You Magazine on 22 September.


    16th August: Plantagenet Alliance Judicial Review

    The Richard III Society acknowledges the decision handed down in the Queen's Bench Division (Administrative Court) by The Honourable Mr Justice Haddon-Cave to grant permission for the Plantagenet Alliance to bring a Judicial Review hearing against the Secretary of State for Justice and the University of Leicester—and others—over the decision to reinter King Richard in Leicester Cathedral.

    The matter must now be left to the due process of law, but we hope it will be resolved amicably and quickly so that King Richard's remains can be reinterred with honour and dignity and without controversy. The Judicial Review hearing will take place on 26 November 2013.

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    30 June: Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth by Graham Turner

    Richard III by Graham Turner
    Detail of Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth
    © Graham Turner.
    On Saturday, 29th June, in the Heritage Room at the Bosworth Battlefield Centre as part of an exhibition of his work and in front of a group of invited friends, Graham Turner, the acclaimed historical artist - and member of the Society - unveiled his latest painting of King Richard III. For once, Graham had not been showing progress reports on his website, so his audience had only a vague idea as to what to expect. They were not to be disappointed! This depiction of Richard is quite stunning.

    The king is fully armoured, mounted on his horse just before the Battle of Bosworth. Alongside him is his friend, Sir Robert Percy, while other knights of the household can be seen in the background. Richard's armour is gilded and he wears the jewelled circlet crown, with fleur-de-lys upon its helm. He is every bit the king about to do battle for his throne.

    Although Graham had started the painting before the finding of the remains of the king, he was able to incorporate the findings into the final picture. King Richard's face is based upon the reconstruction commissioned by the Society.

    Prints on paper or canvas are available from Graham's website at

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    23 May: Richard III by Andrew Stewart Jamieson

    Richard III by Andrew Jamieson
    Richard III by Andrew Stewart Jamieson,
    © Richard III Society.
    The Society has commissioned this artwork by the Queen's Scribe, Andrew Stewart Jamieson, depicting Richard III mounted on his horse, armoured as a warrior, but holding a sceptre denoting his kingship. Richard's armorial bearings are shown on the horse trappings and in his banner, while his crowned shield is surrounded by the Garter. Alongside him runs his white boar, while the grass is powdered with forget-me-nots, white roses for York and broom flowers and pods for the Plantagenets.

    A new range of merchandise featuring the design is now available:

    • Crested image A4 prints (stock no. 175): on good quality card and presented in a card protective envelope. Cost will be £7.00 per print, plus p&p per item of £1 for UK orders, £3 for EU orders, and £3.50 for RoW orders.
    • Crested image Notelets (stock item 176) – which can also be used as greetings cards: on good quality card with an envelope, banded & sold in packs of 10. Cost will be £7.50 per pack, plus p&p per item of £1.50 for UK orders, £3.80 for EU orders, and £5 for RoW orders.
    • Crested image Postcards (stock item 177): Cost will be 50p per postcard, plus p&p per item of £0.50 for UK orders, £0.75p for EU orders, and £0.85 for RoW orders.

    Please e-mail our Sales Liaison Officer to order.

    Find out more about Andrew Stewart Jamieson.

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    23 May: New Society publication

    English Wills proved in the Prerogative Court of York, 1477-1499
    English Wills proved in the
    Prerogative Court of York, 1477-1499
    English Wills proved in the Prerogative Court of York, 1477-1499 edited by Heather Falvey, Lesley Boatwright and Peter Hammond. The Richard III Society's latest contribution to fifteenth century research and scholarship, 'The York Wills', has now been published. This book, the product of a group project organised by the Research Committee of the Richard III Society, contains the 89 wills written wholly or mostly in English, providing full transcripts and also translations of any Latin sections.

    The Introduction discusses the form of a medieval will and uses examples from these wills to illustrate the points being made. Appendix I is a list of all of entries in York Probate Register, Volume V, in the order in which they appear. Appendix II summarises the burial requests of the 89 testators. There is a comprehensive glossary and also indexes of persons, places and subjects.

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    23 May: Richard III: The king in the car park, & The unseen story

    Richard III: The King in the car parkWhen a skeleton was found under a Leicester car park in September 2012, the news broke around the world. Research began, involving dozens of specialists in the fields of archaeology, osteology, history, forensic pathology, genealogy and DNA analysis; could this skeleton be the remains, lost for 500 years, of England's most infamous king? Philippa Langley, an Edinburgh based screenwriter and secretary of the Scottish Branch of the Richard III Society, was the main advocator of the project, and together with the University of Leicester they embarked on a journey to discover the medieval monarch's lost bones. Presented by Simon Farnaby, 'Richard III: The king In the car park' tells every step, twist and turn of the story. It unveils a brand new facial reconstruction made from the skull and reveals the results of the final tests that confirm or deny the body's identity. Additionally. 'The unseen story' features exclusive footage of the dig, forensic tests and fresh interviews with the lead scientists, piecing together the critical steps in the archaeological excavation. We see how the Greyfriars Church was uncovered and witness the painstaking exhumation of the lost King's grave from the first indications of human remains to the exposure of the body's twisted spine revealing a new dimension to the hunt for England's long-lost king.

    The Channel 4 documentary on the discovery of King Richard's remains will be available on DVD from Monday 27 May. Total running time is 150 minutes. The DVD will be available from all good DVD retailers and from Amazon.

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    23 May: New orchestral composition for the Society

    Robert Draper, composer
    Robert Draper, composer
    The Society is delighted to host a new composition, Richard III, by Robert Draper who has been inspired by the remarkable discovery of the remains of King Richard III in Leicester last year.

    This orchestral piece is scored for two flutes, two oboes, english horn, two bassoons, 4 french horns, 2 trumpets, 3 trombones, timpani, pipe organ and strings. The opening oboe theme has a tinge of sadness, but this fuses to connect with the drama of Bosworth Field as the music develops.

    Robert Draper is a refreshing and individual sounding modern day English classical composer. He writes engaging music which is dramatic, passionate and direct. A composer and pianist, he read music at the University of London Goldsmiths' College, where he studied composition. He studied piano with Russian virtuoso Evgenia Chudinovich. He has written major works for orchestra, choir, piano, string quartet and other instruments. He is 49 and lives in the East Sussex countryside of southern England.

    Images shown during the presentation are courtesy of Geoffrey Wheeler, Studio88, Gerry Hitch, Osprey Publishing Ltd and Peter Hammond. Click the 'Play' button below to listen to the music.

    Find out more about Robert.

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    12 March: An Adjournment debate held in Westminster Hall

    An Adjournment Debate was held in Westminster Hall beginning at 11 am on 12 March 2013. In his opening remarks, the MP for York Central, Hugh Bayley, paid tribute to the leading archaeologist Richard Buckley for his work and the Richard III Society for proposing the project.

    Mr Bayley then asked that a fair and independent process be created for arbitrating when, how and where King Richard III should be reinterred. He felt it was the responsibility of the State to make the decision and it should not be delegated to a group of academics and archaeologists from Leicester University.

    David Trendinnick , MP for Bosworth, pointed out that the majority of people in Leicestershire wanted the King's remains to stay in Leicester, and Mr Bayley confirmed that 7,500 signatories had been collected to this end, but that 24,000 had signed a petition in favour of York. The member for Selby, Nigel Adams, contributed that the views of the 'descendants' of the late king's family should be taken into consideration.

    Jon Ashworth, MP for Leicester South, quoted from the application for the Exhumation Licence which is explicit in that in the unlikely event that the remains of Richard III are located, 'the intention is for these to be reinterred at St Martins Cathedral Leicester which is good archaeological practice'.

    Chris Skidmore, MP for Kingswood, suggested a compromise that King Richard lay in state in York for a week before reburial in Leicester, and pointed out that a tomb proposed by the Richard III Society had been privately funded and that £30,000 had been raised and, therefore, there would be no cost to the State.

    Westminster Hall
    Westminster Hall
    Mr Bayley continued that the terms of Exhumation Licence should be reviewed as the remains had been confirmed as those of King Richard, and that such licences had been amended in recent years. He referred to a letter he had received from the chair of the Advisory Panel for Burial Archaeology, Professor Holger Schutkowski, who wrote that the final decision lay with the Ministry of Justice who can vary the terms of the Licence. Mr Bayley proposed to the MoJ that an independent committee of experts should examine the historical record, scientific analysis, good archaeological practice, ethical and religious issues, and then advise how, where and when the reburial takes place. He continued that notice should be given to the University of Leicester that the Government could amend the licence and therefore plans for the reburial should temporarily cease. He also felt that this proposed advisory committee should, in the national interest, wait for the full scientific results. He commented on the split public opinion and called for the matter to be discussed in a dignified and sober way and that the Wars of the Roses should not be re-ignited. He concluded with remarks that history is written by the victors, referred to Richard's 'reputation being trashed by that pesky playwright from Stratford-upon-Avon' and that the king was 'Good King Richard' and who in his lifetime requested to be buried in York.

    Julian Sturdy, the MP for York Outer, supported Mr Bayley saying the call was strong for Richard to be buried where he had been loved. He suggested that the Government and the University of Leicester had come to an agreement behind closed doors and there had been no public consultation. His statement that King Richard wanted to be buried in York was challenged by Jon Ashworth who said that there was no evidence that King Richard wanted to be buried there.

    Finally Jeremy Wright, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State and Minister for Prisons, responded to the proposals and arguments and began by saying it was a matter of national pride and excitement that the remains of King Richard had been found and referred to the joint venture between the University, Leicester City Council and the Richard III Society as an outstanding research project.

    He continued by stating the MOJ's jurisdiction covered burial law and policy. He confirmed that there was wide discretion in the conditions of the Exhumation Licence but also confirmed that the responsibility for carrying out the terms of the Licence rested with the University of Leicester – that was the law. He stated that York Minster supported the reburial of King Richard at Leicester Cathedral. He continued that conditions of an exhumation licence can be changed but that it is unusual and that the University of Leicester could make such a request. He concluded that the University is happy to receive representations to take into account what Mr Bayley had said and that the MoJ could facilitate a meeting of these interested parties.

    The Chairman of the debate, Edward Leigh, concluded with the statement that 'King Richard III was as controversial in death as he was in life'.

    Read the Daily Hansard record.

    What is an 'Adjournment' Debate?

    An adjournment debate is simply a way in the Commons of having a general debate without requiring the House to vote. There are several different types of Adjournment debates. Some allow the Commons to hold a general open-ended debate on a subject or a government policy without reaching a formal decision about it. Others provide an opportunity for backbench MPs to raise constituency issues or other matters relating to government administration or policy - and to obtain a response from a government minister. This debate fell in to the latter category.

    Setting the record straight: Where did King Richard want to be buried?

    During the debate there were several references to King Richard's desire to be buried in York Minster. An article written by the historian Peter Hammond, its President, and published in the December 2012 issue of the Ricardian Bulletin, details the basis for the speculation/interpretation of the known facts.

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    28 February: The Proposed Tomb for King Richard III


    The design of a new tomb for King Richard III presents a number of interesting yet problematic challenges. Firstly, we are confronted by the inescapable fact that this will be the second time Richard has been buried, and that the two occasions are separated by more than five hundred years. So how can we produce a design that reconciles the funerary requirements of a fifteenth century English monarch with reburial in the twenty first century? How can we bridge the gap of half a millennium in a single monument that encapsulates both the distant past and the present day? And secondly, to what extent are the tombs of medieval kings – strictly contemporary with the deaths of their respective monarchs – an appropriate precedent for the modern reburial of King Richard?Proposed tomb top view

    We have to accept that had Richard had any control over his own funeral he would almost certainly have been commemorated with a substantial tomb chest surmounted by a recumbent effigy in the robes and regalia of state. But as we are all painfully aware, Richard's burial was placed in the hands of monks who were probably acting under duress, compelled to dispose of the king as quickly as possible once it had been decided that the corpse had been displayed for long enough. The treatment meted out to Richard in 1485 fully justifies the recovery and honourable reburial of his remains.

    The memorial stone to Richard III, located in the chancel floor of Leicester Cathedrall
    The memorial stone to Richard III,
    located in the chancel floor of
    Leicester Cathedral
    Thus a dark past suddenly becomes a much brighter future. Richard is rescued from the darkness of his original resting place and reburied in the light of Leicester Cathedral. Of course Richard was initially interred in consecrated ground, but the dissolution of the monasteries, followed by the redevelopment and reuse of the former Greyfriars site, means that since the mid sixteenth century the spiritual environment in which Richard was laid to rest has been totally destroyed. A grave beneath a local authority car park sharing contaminated ground with the leaking foundations of a Victorian toilet is no place for anyone – let alone an anointed king.

    Consequently Richard's spiritual and physical transition from darkness to light is an important consideration in the design of a new tomb. The first challenge surrounded the material in which the tomb would be constructed, for it had to symbolise this dark to light transformation. But it was also felt that the chosen material should reflect something of Richard's personal history.

    It was therefore decided that the new tomb should be constructed of Magnesian Limestone, not only because its smooth, bright, honey-coloured appearance enshrines the light and optimism of Richard's future, but also because it is the stone in which York Minster is built, and is still used to this very day for repairs, maintenance, and rebuilding. Thus Magnesian Limestone represents Richard's journey from darkness to light and also his important connections with Yorkshire and the City of York.

    Having selected an appropriate building material the next challenge was to create a design that incorporated both the medieval past and the present day, something that would acknowledge Richard's life as a fifteenth century nobleman and king without imprisoning him in a medieval style tomb in the twenty-first century. Thus, as the detailed description presented below will make clear, the design incorporates features representing Richard's family (White Rose of the House of York), Richard's devotion to the Christian faith (Cross of St. Cuthbert), and Richard's personal emblem (White Boar). These personally significant motifs are depicted in medieval style, decorating the sides and end of the monument, and creating the impression of a fifteenth century tomb in both feel and appearance.

    Proposed tomb end viewProposed tomb side viewHowever, a more modern aspect has been attempted with the upper surface of the monument; for it is here that the design departs radically from what one might expect of a royal medieval tomb. Instead of a recumbent effigy the design presents a smooth open plane of bright honey-coloured stone, punctuated by a royal coat of arms inlaid in gold metal at the head, and a gold metal plaque and carved motto at the foot. The resulting effect is one of harmonious and peaceful repose, a symbol of kingship in the form of a royal coat of arms, and a representation of Richard himself in his personal inscribed motto. In addition the gold metal plaque serves to bridge the gap between the king and the man by including Richard's full name and his title as duke of Gloucester, thereby telling the story of a human being, and not merely recording the final resting place of one who later in life became Richard III.

    What we have tried to achieve is a tomb that firstly encapsulates Richard's physical and spiritual elevation to a brighter and more optimistic future, and secondly emphasises that the remains which will lie beneath it are those of a man who lived a different life before becoming king. This, of course, is not to disparage Richard's kingship or his right and title to that high office ordained by God. It is merely to state that he was also a heart-broken son, a loyal brother, a loving husband, and a devoted father. He was a family man who found his true place in life as a duke in the north of England, before being compelled to abandon all that made him happy in the constitutional crisis of 1483 and subsequent acceptance of the crown.

    I hope we have made clear that the design of this tomb has set itself a demanding agenda. The result is a sincere and deeply genuine attempt to commemorate a man who finally has a chance to truly Rest In Peace.

    The Tomb in Detail

    The relative simplicity of the design is intended to reflect important surviving evidence concerning King Richard's personal religious preferences.

    Richard's Book of Hours, dated to the 1420s, may have been sixty years old by the time it came into his possession (A. F. Sutton & L. Visser-Fuchs, The Hours of Richard III, p. 39). As a reigning monarch Richard could have commissioned the finest artists in Europe to illustrate a new and magnificent Book of Hours, yet he chose to use a second hand volume lacking the lavish illuminations known to have been in circulation at the courts of France and Burgundy.

    As an example of the king's private and personal piety, this relatively modest and understated book can reasonably be assumed to reflect the king's wider religious tastes.

    The proposed tomb is therefore similarly modest in scale and decoration, consisting of a plinth supporting a chest surmounted by a rectangular slab (length 7ft, width 3ft 6ins, height 2ft 3ins). The original design has been extended by the addition a plinth following concerns over the low height of the tomb chest. The intention has always been to permit an easy appreciation of the upper surface of the tomb as well as the sides, hence the elevation of the monument to approximately desk height.

    The rectangular slab surmounting the chest has been carefully designed to incorporate three important features, each personally significant to the king:

    At the head of the slab the Royal Coat of Arms of King Richard III is inlaid into the stone in gold coloured metal.

    The coat of arms depicted here is based on a drawing in Thomas Willement's Regal Heraldry of an illuminated initial letter taken from Richard's manuscript version of Vegetius' De Re Militari (On the Art of War), which, it has been suggested, was commissioned for Richard's son Edward of Middleham (Hammond & Sutton, Road to Bosworth, p. 163; Jones, Psychology of a Battle, plate 12).

    Then, beneath the coat of arms, in the lower half of the slab, an inlaid gold-coloured plaque inscribed in simple capital lettering:


    1452 - 1485



    And finally, at the foot of the slab, Richard's personal motto cut into the stone in unembellished capital lettering:


    The significance of inscribing the king's motto directly into the stone is vitally important. It is a physical representation of the fact that loyalty was deeply ingrained into Richard's personality and was an intrinsic part of his character.

    The plaque and motto are intentionally placed in close proximity, one above the other, following the example of Richard's signature and motto as evidenced by a surviving document dated to May 1483 (Hammond & Sutton, Road to Bosworth, p. 98).

    The careful positioning of the coat of arms, plaque and carved inscription are intended to leave an expanse of plain smooth stone, thereby ensuring that the final effect is one of proportion and harmony, conveying a sense of dignity, serenity, and tasteful simplicity. Similarly the side and end panels of the tomb chest are delicately adorned with personally important commemorative imagery that has been carefully researched and chosen: a three-motif sequence consisting of a rose, a cross, and a boar.

    The rose depicts Richard's family, the House of York.

    The medieval heraldic rose used here, consisting of an inner and outer circle of petals, is taken from Julian Rowe's illustration of King Richard's battle standard (P. W. Hammond & A. F. Sutton, The Road to Bosworth, p. 216). The white rose of York as used in the middle ages had various orientations, with the single point sometimes at the top (as in the rose in the arms of Edward IV's illegitimate daughter Isabella, Henry Bedingfield and Peter Gwynn-Jones, Heraldry, p.62) and sometimes at the bottom of the drawing. Examples of each can be found, as well as some where the rose has been given only four petals instead of five so that there is no top or bottom point as in Writhe's Garter Book, (Richard Marks and Anne Payne, p.38). Richard's standard as flown at the Bosworth Battlefield Centre on Ambion Hill has a white rose with the point uppermost.

    In addition there are numerous examples of mid-fifteenth century Yorkist roses orientated in precisely the same fashion as the tomb. Our intention from the outset has been to assemble a selection of motifs which can be clearly shown to be personally associated with Richard.

    The cross symbolises the king's devotion to the Christian faith.

    The example represented here is based on the pectoral cross of St. Cuthbert housed in Durham Cathedral. Richard's statutes bestowing collegiate status on the church of Middleham in Wensleydale demonstrate that St Cuthbert was particularly venerated by the king. (J. M. Melhuish, The College of King Richard III Middleham, p. 7; A. J. Pollard, Richard III, p. 178).

    And the boar is Richard's personal heraldic emblem.

    The example depicted here is very loosely based on a carved white boar taken from the pulpit of Fotheringhay Church in Northamptonshire, the family mausoleum of the House of York. Appropriately, the ornate pulpit was a gift to the church made by Richard's elder brother King Edward IV in the mid 1470s (M. K. Jones, Bosworth: Psychology of a Battle, plate 10; J. Wilkinson, Richard, the Young King to be, plate 21). The rampant beast shown on the tomb is intended to represent Richard fighting back against Tudor propaganda.

    Finally the plinth upon which the decorative panels stand is adorned with capital lettering and two crosses:

    +   RICHARD III   +

    Richard's regnal number is given here so that the gold metal plaque on the surface of the tomb (described above) can stand as a more personal tribute.

    Before the design was extended to include a plinth two local specialists submitted quotes for construction and placement of the tomb ranging from £15,000 to £20,000. An up-to-date quote from award-winning sculptor and stonemason, Graeme Mitcheson (see details below), and which includes the plinth, is £28,000 - £30,000 (incl VAT). However, quotes could also be obtained from local master craftsmen who have previously worked with the cathedral. It is anticipated that the tomb will take approximately four months to construct.

    The Design Team

    In September 2010, at the very beginning of the Looking For Richard project, Philippa Langley, originator of the Looking for Richard project, commissioned historian David Johnson and artist Wendy Johnson to design a tomb for Richard III. Together David and Wendy have been members of the Richard III Society for more than forty years and have contributed letters and articles to the Ricardian Bulletin. The design and CGI images of the tomb have taken over two years to complete.

    • Wendy Johnson specialises in portraits of people and animals. She has exhibited and sold her artwork, and has also received commissions. Wendy has held a deep interest in Richard III since childhood, and has been a member of the Richard III Society since 1986.

    • David Johnson, BA Hons, MA, received a PhD in History from the University of York in 2012. His Adwalton Moor 1643: The Battle that Changed a War (2003) is regarded as the definitive work on this pivotal English Civil War battle. David has been a member of the Richard III Society since 1995, and is in the process of preparing a new book exploring the political controversy surrounding Richard's accession to the throne in 1483.

    • CGI Images of the Tomb Design Produced by Joseph Fox of Lost in Castles.

    Lost in Castles specialises in historical computer reconstructions. Joe Fox, graphics specialist, worked with the designers of King Richard's tomb to realise their vision in CGI form. A family business, their previous reconstructions available on DVD include: Middleham Castle in Wensleydale, Sandal Castle in Wakefield, and Houdan and Etampes in France. The current project is Conwy Castle in North Wales. For further information, visit their website.

    • Award-winning Sculptor and Stonemason: Graeme Mitcheson ARBS.

    Special mention is made here of Graeme Mitcheson. Graeme is an award-winning sculptor and stonemason from Northumberland in northern England. Graduating from Loughborough College of Art, he lives in Castle Donington, Leicestershire, and thus represents both the northern and local people. Over 20 years, Graeme has created many large scale public artworks all over the UK and has several sited in Leicestershire. Graeme is an elected member of the Royal British Society of Sculptors. For further information, visit Graeme's website.

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    27 February: What are 'Ancestors' and 'Descendants'?

    Since the discovery of Richard III's remains there has been some rather odd use in the press and elsewhere of the words 'ancestor' and 'descendant', which indicate family relationships over what is usually a long time gap.


    There are no living ancestors of Richard III - despite claims which have been made to this effect!

    An ancestor is someone further back in the family tree (parents, grandparents, great-grandparents and so on backwards) of the person named.


    As far as we know there are no living descendants of Richard III.

    A descendant is a child, grandchild, great-grandchild, and so on forwards in a direct line from the person named.

    Richard III had only three recognised children, all of whom died childless.

    There are many living collateral descendants of Richard III.

    A collateral descendant is the descendant of a brother or sister of the person named.

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    15 February: A Tomb for Richard III ~ a Magnificent Project

    How You can Donate to the Project

    Golden Boar
    Boar Crest on the proposed tomb
    Now that Richard III has been found and his remains identified, the Society would like to see him reinterred with honour in a tomb befitting his noble status.

    The design commissioned for the Society is for a free-standing table tomb and features Richard's boar, the white rose for the House of York and the cross of St Cuthbert, this being a symbol of Richard's piety.

    If built, the tomb will be made in a pale honey-coloured stone, the colour representing Richard's emergence from the obscurity of the unknown grave into the light of recognition and honour.

    If you would like to make a donation towards the cost of the tomb and its installation, there are a numbers of ways to do so:

    • Send your cheque, made payable to 'The Richard III Society" and marked "Richard III tomb" on the back, to The Society's Chairman: Dr Phil Stone, 181, Rock Avenue, Gillingham, Kent, ME7 5PY.
    • Alternatively, please use the Society's PayPal account and put "for Richard III's tomb" in the comment column. The Society's Paypal account e-mail is :
    • If you wish to make a direct bank transfer, please contact The Society's Chairman for details.

    Thank you.

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    13 February: Society Unveils Designs for Proposed Tomb of King Richard III

    Proposed tomb top view
    Richard III's tomb — proposed design
    Following confirmation that the human remains of King Richard III are to be reinterred in Leicester, the Richard III Society today reveals plans for how it would like his tomb to look.

    The tomb design was commissioned by Philippa Langley in September 2010 at the very beginning of the Looking For Richard III project. It is based on Richard’s life, and what was important and meaningful to him, and the design was undertaken by a team of specialists with over 40 years of research into Richard III.

    The Richard III Society is working in partnership with Philippa Langley, the Originator of the search for King Richard III, together with Sally Henshaw (secretary) and Richard Smith (chairman) of the East Midlands Branch, under the leadership of the Society’s chairman Dr Phil Stone.

    The objective of the proposed tomb is to honour the king’s mortal remains with a memorial in keeping with the cathedral’s interior space and ambience, while reflecting mediaeval royal tomb designs.

    The proposal includes the following:

    • The royal tomb will be sited inside the cathedral in a light and bright area suited to the cathedral’s revised design and layout, such that it will not impact on services nor will pedestrian flow be impeded through the cathedral and around the tomb itself.
    • The tomb’s structure has been designed with local input to ensure its appropriateness and historical accuracy.
    • The full cost of the rectangular tomb, which is to be 7ft long, 3ft 6in wide and 2ft 3in high and executed in a light honey-coloured stone (Magnesian Limestone is proposed), will be funded by the Society via an appeal for donations (65% of the cost has already been donated).
    • The tomb is a gift to the people of Leicester and as a tribute to them following the earlier gifts by the Society of the Richard III Statue in Castle Gardens (1980), the memorial stone in the cathedral (1982), and Richard’s standard and banner, proposed to hang above the tomb (2013).

    Leicester Cathedral have issued a press release

    All images shown below © The Richard III Society

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    8 February: Richard III will be Reinterred in Leicester Cathedral

    Leicester Cathedral
    Leicester Cathedral
    At the opening of Leicester City Council's new exhibition in the Guildhall, Richard III: Leicester's Search for a King on the evening of 7 February, Sir Robert Burgess, Vice Chancellor of the University of Leicester and the Right Reverend Tim Stevens, Bishop of Leicester, confirmed that King Richard III would be reinterred in Leicester Cathedral.


    Sir Robert quoted from a letter he had just received from the Ministry of Justice confirming the terms of the Exhumation Licence which had stipulated that the remains, if proved to be King Richard's, should be reinterred in Leicester Cathedral. They also confirmed that their role was limited to ensuring the correct procedures were followed with regard to burials. Sir Robert confirmed that it was the wish of the University that Richard be reinterred in Leicester Cathedral.


    The Bishop spoke of a message he had received from York Minster which confirmed the Dean and Chapter supported the terms of the Ministry of Justice licence and accordingly they commend 'Richard to Leicester's care and to the cathedral community's prayers'.

    In respect of the nature of the service, the Bishop acknowledged the changes in the church in the 16th century, but confirmed that the form of service would follow that of the established church; however he was in consultation with the Roman Catholic Church through the Bishop of Nottingham who was willing to take part in the service. Bishop Stevens also spoke of his intention to work with the Richard III Society with regard to an appropriate memorial for King Richard. Finally he indicated the timing of the ceremony would be in the spring of 2014.

    The choice of Leicester Cathedral will disappoint some and that is understandable. However it is important that the burial of King Richard III is not surrounded by controversy, his posthumous reputation has had more than enough of that over the past five hundred years. We should all be grateful that his remains have been found and are now to receive the honour and dignity that is due to an anointed English king. We might also take comfort from the fact that King Richard will now lie in peace and honour in the very heart of his kingdom, almost equidistant between York and Westminster.

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    6 February: Prime Minister's Questions

    At Prime Minister's Question Time Michael McCann MP asked David Cameron if he could confirm that Atos, the private contractor used by the government to assess whether people claiming benefits are eligible for a job, had declared Richard III fit for work. The House laughed and the Prime Minister replied that the case had not come his way.

    Despite his passing 528 years ago this is not the first time King Richard has been mentioned in the British Parliament. In November 1980 the Broadcasting Bill became law; it had originally contained a clause that allowed for complaints to be made on behalf of those who were already dead, on unfair treatment in TV and radio.

    As the Bill was debated in the House of Lords, it became clear that the clause was in conflict with the laws of libel that do not permit such action to be taken on behalf of the dead. The example of adherents of Richard III objecting to his characterisation by William Shakespeare in his much performed play was quickly established.

    As a result an amendment was tabled by the government which stipulated that such complaints, on behalf of the deceased person, could only be made within five years of their death. The Chairman of the British Broadcasting Corporation, shortly after the Bill had received royal assent, referred to the amendment as the Richard III clause.

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    5 February: 528 Years After His Death, Face of Richard III is Unveiled

    Facial reconstruction
    Facial reconstruction
    The Richard III Society today unveiled the world's only facial reconstruction of the human remains found at the Greyfriars in Leicester, yesterday confirmed as belonging to Richard III. The reconstruction project, led by Professor Caroline Wilkinson, Professor of Craniofacial Identification at the University of Dundee, was commissioned and funded by the Richard III Society.

    To those who have seen so many portrayals of Richard III with contorted body and facial features, this calm and apparently thoughtful face could be a shock. After his death, many portraits deliberately added narrowed eyes and mean lines. We have already discovered he had no kyphosis or withered arm - now we know he had a warm face, young, earnest and rather serious. How many scales will drop from how many eyes! This likeness is so real, it is a remarkable tribute to Professor Wilkinson and her reconstruction team. Congratulations and thanks are in order, but these words somehow don't seem adequate to recognise such art, skill and loving craftsmanship.

    Dr. Phil Stone, Richard III Society Chairman, said: "It's an interesting face, younger and fuller than we have been used to seeing, less careworn, and with the hint of a smile. When I first saw it, I thought there is enough of the portraits about it for it to be King Richard but not enough to suggest they have been copied. I think people will like it. He's a man who lived. Indeed, when I looked him in the eye, 'Good King Richard' seemed alive and about to speak. At last, it seems, we have the true image of Richard III - is this the face that launched a thousand myths?"

    February 5th Press Release.

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    4 February: King Richard III'S Remains are Confirmed as Found

    At an historic press conference on the morning of 4 February, the University of Leicester revealed evidence from The Greyfriars dig and confirmed that the human remains of King Richard III had been positively identified. They revealed a range of supporting evidence, including DNA analysis, radiocarbon dating and skeletal examination - proving the identity of the skeleton. Key points are:

    • DNA from skeleton matches two of Richard III's maternal line relatives. Leicester genealogist verifies living relatives of Richard III's family
    • Individual likely to have been killed by one of two fatal injuries to the skull – one possibly from a sword and one possibly from a halberd
    • Ten wounds discovered on skeleton - Richard III killed by trauma to the back of the head. Part of the skull sliced off
    • Radiocarbon dating reveals individual had a high protein diet – including significant amounts of seafood - meaning he was likely to be of high status
    • Radiocarbon dating reveals individual died in the second half of the 15th or in the early 16th century – consistent with Richard's death in 1485
    • Skeleton reveals severe scoliosis – onset believed to have occurred at the time of puberty
    • Although around 5 feet 8 inches tall (1.72m), condition meant King Richard III would have stood significantly shorter and his right shoulder may have been higher than the left
    • Feet were truncated at an unknown point in the past, but a significant time after the burial
    • Corpse was subjected to 'humiliation injuries' - including a sword through the right buttock
    • Individual had unusually slender, almost feminine, build for a man - in keeping with contemporaneous accounts
    • No evidence for 'withered arm' - as portrayed by Shakespeare - found
    • Possibility that the individual's hands were tied
    • Grave was hastily dug, was not big enough and there was no shroud or coffin.

    Richard Buckley, the lead archaeologist for the Search for Richard III project said: 'It is the academic conclusion of the University of Leicester that the individual exhumed at The Greyfriars in August 2012 is indeed King Richard III, the last Plantagenet King of England.'

    For more information visit the University's website.

    February 4th Press Release.

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