Richard III fight goes to High Court

120320143066 (4604634)

120320143066 (4604634)

First published in News

THE public should be consulted on where Richard III’s remains are buried, campaigners have said.

Distant descendants of relatives yesterday asked three judges at London’s High Court to rule that Justice Secretary Chris Grayling is under a legal duty to allow a consultation. Richard was killed at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485 and taken to Leicester by supporters of Henry VII. His bones were discovered under a Leicester car park in 2012.

The Plantagenet Alliance want the remains buried at York Minster, but their counsel Gerard Clarke said they would be satisfied with a wide-ranging public consultation.

Mr Clarke said views should be obtained from the Crown, groups including English Heritage, relevant churches and public bodies. He suggested Leicester, York and Westminster be among the choices. Mr Clarke said the Justice Secretary made a bad decision there was no obligation to consult. At the heart of the case is a Ministry of Justice decision to grant a “section 25 licence” under the Burial Act giving theUniversity of Leicester licence to excavate and permission to decide where to bury the bones. They and Leicester council want reburial in Leicester Cathedral.

Matthew Howarth, for the alliance, said there was “every chance” the licence would be quashed and criticised Leicester for opposing independent adjudication.

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