A CAMPAIGN is under way to have the remains of Richard III brought home to York.

Debate is growing over where the presumed remains of the king should finally rest after archaeologists working on a dig in Leicester discovered human remains widely believed to be those of the Plantagenet king.

An online petition called “Richard III: Come Home To York” has been launched by The Richard III Foundation, advocating the reburial of the remains in York.

Richard had planned to be buried at York Minster but he is believed to have been interred in Leicester after his defeat at the Battle of Bosworth by Henry Tudor in 1485.

The site has received supportive comments from across the world and Yorkshire people are being urged to support the cause.

Andy Smith, UK public relations director for the group, said: “York was Richard’s city.

“It is where he belongs, and it is only right that this great Lord of the North should return home to Yorkshire after more than five hundred years’ enforced absence.

“The Richard III Foundation urges the people of Yorkshire to join with us in calling for Richard, our hero and martyr, to be brought home to the city that he loved, and where he is still loved to this day.”

Richard spent much of his youth at Middleham Castle and for 12 years he ruled the North of England on behalf of his elder brother, Edward IV, earning a widespread reputation for fair-mindedness and justice.

After becoming king, he visited York several times and was showered with gifts each time.

His son, Edward, was crowned Prince of Wales while in York. Despite being widely vilified by theories that he had a hand in the murder of his 12-year-old nephew Edward V, one of the Princes in the Tower, Richard III was popular in York both before and after he was king.

On his death, the council made a special entry in the House Book, lamenting his passing and remembering how many good things he had done for York.

Joe Ann Ricca, founder of the foundation, said: “Richard obviously had no choice after he was killed as to where his remains were taken, but today we have the opportunity to right the many wrongs that have been done to this unjustly maligned king, by correcting the distorted picture that has been painted of Richard over the centuries, and by bringing his remains home to Yorkshire, and to York Minster as he wanted.”


Village to celebrate links

THE life of Richard III and his connections with North Yorkshire are to be celebrated in a village near York later this month.

On October 20 and 21, St Helen and the Holy Cross Church, at Sheriff Hutton, will hold Richard III At Sheriff Hutton - Revealed!, dedicated to the monarch and his family. The church contains an effigy of Richard’s son, Edward of Middleham.

The celebration will include a concert performance by the York Waits town band on October 20. A series of presentations on Richard III’s life and that of his family will be held the following day as well as a sung service with medieval church music.

There will also be an exploration of the links between the king and the village, and the Towton Battlefield Society and the Frei Companie re-enactors will lead an afternoon procession on October 21.

For details, email jsoak@btinternet.com or phone 01347 878754.