The ruling for King Richard III’s reburial has finally been given. He will now be re-interred in Leicester, where his body was found underneath a parking lot. It has been an ongoing battle since finding his remains in September 2012, as his distant relatives wanted him to be buried in York.
Richard III was King of England between 1483 and 1485, before being defeated at the Battle of Bosworth. Henry Tudor, then Henry VII of England, disposed of his predecessor’s body in the then Greyfriars Church. However, the church was demolished, and modern day buildings were placed there instead. The exact location of the crypts in the church became a parking lot, which was where the king was later found.
Descendents of King Richard III indicated that he would have liked to have been buried in York. He was a Yorkist king, and spent much of his life in that part of the country. He lived there as a child, and later before becoming king after his brother, Edward IV.
Leicester council had the right to re-inter the king, and it was going to happen at Leicester Cathedral. Those were the terms set after the agreement of digging up the parking lot site in the hope of finding the missing king. Many people supported this considering he had spent over 500 years buried in the city.
The distant relatives wanted the chance to have their say, and their opinions to be heard. The discussion went up to the High Court—the highest court in the United Kingdom—but the ruling was postponed to May 23, 2014. Today, the ruling for the reburial of King Richard III has finally been given, and the court decided that the distant relatives’ views did not need to be taken into account. Leicester will be allowed to re-inter the king.
All most people have wanted to do is re-inter the body as quickly and with as much dignity as possible. Leicester also needed to know if its plans for the revamp of Leicester Cathedral could take place. The city needed to revamp the cathedral so that Kin Richard III’s tomb would fit inside. There are also plans for a new visitor’s center, which will tell the story of the fallen king, and the finding of his body over 500 years later. While some of the plans had to start already, there was little confidence that the city would gain the final piece to effectively tell the story; leading the public from the story into the cathedral to see his tomb.
The ruling judges in the High Court ruling recognized the expenditure of Leicester City Council that has already taken place. The judge also acknowledged that the expenditure was to ensure the king gained a reburial that was fitting for his title and life. The decision was important, especially considering Richard III was the last English king to die on the battlefield.
The king deserves to be buried with dignity, and that was the final decision from the High Court judges. A ruling has finally been given, and King Richard III will remain in Leicester and reburied in Leicester Cathedral.
By Alexandria Ingham