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Petition shows support for Richard III burial in Leicester

medium_3473317431An online petition surrounding the continuing argument of where Richard III’s remains should be laid to rest, has finished. The results portray the public’s wishes for the last Plantagenet king to be buried in Leicester, rather than York Minster, with over 3000 more votes siding with St Martin’s Cathedral, Leicester.

Over 34,300 people signed the online petition, whilst a rival petition supporting the burial in York, created by the Plantagenet Alliance, has received 31,260 names. The Alliance’s petition needed at least 100,000 signatures before a parliamentary discussion would occur to debate where the skeletal remains should be buried.

The Ministry of Justice issued the license for the University of Leicester to decide the final burial place. It is now believed that the results of these petitions will influence the outcome of the judicial review next month, as this review takes public opinion into account when making their final decision. Although, the Plantagenet Alliance has been successful in gaining a judicial review to challenge the final decision.

In February, when it was confirmed that the remains found under a car park in Leicester were that of Richard III, a debate surrounding where he should be buried sparked almost immediately. The creators of the rivalling petitions and members of the Richard III society continue to dispute where the king should be buried.

Some believe that because Richard has been buried in Leicester for 528 years and has become a focal point for the history of the city, it seems understandable that he would be reburied in the city he was found in.

Yorkists, on the other hand, disagree with this idea. Under the rule of his brother, Edward IV, Richard was made head of the Council of the North, which was based in Yorkshire, where he controlled governmental activity on behalf of the king in the north of England. Richard was also brought up in York, and was devoted to the Yorkist cause.

If the initial plans go ahead, then it is believed that Richard’s remains will be buried at some point before August 2014 in a specifically designed tomb in Leicester cathedral.

Photo credit: Lisby via photopin

  • Danny

    You should change the title of your piece. The York e-Petition was set up by a York resident and has nothing to do with the Plantagenet Alliance. In addition, 7 national newspaper polls conducted since March 2013 have all ended with the vast majority favouring a York burial (typically 60-82%). So, more people favour a York burial over a Leicester burial.

  • 4kingplantagernuts

    Leicester cathedral will be the kings final resting place

  • A good blog post, though I’d just like to take issue with your penultimate sentence. Richard wasn’t brought up in York – he never lived in that city and in his entire life spent no more than a few days there. Some people think he was brought up in YorkSHIRE but even that’s not true as he wasn’t sent to Middleham until he was 13. He was actually brought up in a bunch of places, including Northamptonshire, Herefordshire, Kent, Utrecht and Bruges – but there is no evidence he went anywhere near York until he was a teenager.

    Also, while he was of course devoted to the ‘Yorkist cause’, being the son of the Duke of York, that has no bearing on this matter because the Yorkist cause is not connected in any way with the City of York, many of whose inhabitants were actually Lancastrian supporters (when it suited them).

    Other than that, a good bit of writing. And I’d be grateful if commenter Danny can point to these “7 national newspaper polls conducted since March 2013” because I’m not aware of a single one. There is a poll over on the Posthole, website of the York University Archaeology Department – and that shows a clear majority for Leicester!

  • Elvis Parsley

    Oh come on, it’s not going to be decided by a public vote is it.

  • suze2

    Leicester ,this is always about your ego…you just don’t ever consider the man ,ask any soldier where he would wish to be laid to rest after battle and subsequent abuse, and i guarantee that he would ask to be buried anywhere BUT…..
    I doubt that many in Leicester will give a damn about the king once it’s goal is achieved.

    • Really? This is all about Leicester’s ego? Let’s see. Leicester’s only goal has always been to give Richard III a decent and respectful re-interment in consecrated ground as close as possible to the spot where he was originally commended into God’s loving care by holy men. Based on: good archaeological, historical, legal and theological practice. York’s goal is to snatch Richard III away from the place where he was laid to rest and has slept peacefully for 500 years and to re-inter him far away from any of his family in a place which he only visited a few times. Based on: a supposed ‘special affinity’ between Richard and York which is a 20th century invention unsupported by good evidence. Leicester’s claim is nothing to do with Leicester itself (a town which must indeed have had an ‘affinity’ with Richard or he wouldn’t have mustered his troops there twice) but is instead an argument which seeks to benefit history, England and Richard’s own departed spirit. York’s claim seeks only to benefit York. Now, which city’s ego were we discussing?

  • cazanne100

    Put quite simply there is no definitive evidence as to where Richard wished to be buried (as much as the Pro-York faction may like to think). If we are left to make educated guesses as to what he "may have wanted” then I’d argue he would have wished to be buried in Westminster Abbey next to his wife. Since that will never happen I don’t see how burying him in Leicester is so inappropriate. Not only has his body been there for the last 500 years anyway, it was (the University of) Leicester which spent the time and money to find, recover, and verify his mortal remains. Now that they are ready to spend further time and (a good bit of) money to give him a tomb center stage in Leicester Cathedral it’s hard to dispute they have the better claim. In fact, this pro-York campaign is coming dangerously close to being in poor taste, sort of like a child so resentful of the attention a sibling is receiving they want to step in and steal it. Unless some startling discovery is made clearly proving that Richard really did want to be buried in York I urge the pro-York faction to gracefully bow out of this dispute before they embarrass themselves

  • ex pom outsider

    Get a life guys, he has been dead and buried in Leicester for over 500 years. Worry about the living…and as for those Plantagenet descendants and their court action…what a waste of tax payers’ money.

  • Dawn Richardson

    I am sure if King Richard was given a choice he want to be with his Fam ily his Son Edward..The King deserves respect and a fitting burial.

  • Dawn Richardson

    I think we are all missing the point here!..what about where King Richard would want to be buried ?.with his family, his son Edward..who is interred in York Minster.

    • Annoyed

      Edward of Middleham is thought to be buried in Sheriff Hutton actually.
      Do you not think Richard was aware that if he lost at Bosworth, Henry Tudor would get to decide where R’s body was buried? Why is it up to random people, 500 years later to decide?

      • Dawn Richardson

        I don’t consider myself random..i am English and my ancestors would have mixed with these people he was after all the Monarch and was treated wrongly my people to decry his name in the Lancastrian quarter…in the end they all became one so a real Tapestry to behold.. I am sure most people would want to be somewhere close to the people they once loved I know I would actually..
        I know Anne Neville is in Westminster Abbey nobody knew much about her..
        So as a FOLLOWER of English History for many years since I was 11 years old in my first History lesson about Thomas Beckett of Canterbury.

        I feel its about time we researched more into our history far more than we actually are and to have him laying in a car park is not what I approve of. R is a KING bones or not..we are all a part of it, those of us who are indigenous of the British Isles. going back 500 years like I am historically.. it interests me as I see our Country which was once Great slipping down the pan..

        Why would Richard 111 even think that way ..he fought and was Brave and it possibly never even crossed his mind.

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