Richard III Reinterment Week

Posted By on March 23, 2015

Richard III coffin BBC

Richard III’s coffin, BBC Leicester

This week really is Richard III week and it kicked off yesterday with Richard III’s final journey to Leicester Cathedral.

The hearse carrying Richard III’s remains, which were in a lead envelope inside a coffin made of English oak by Michael Ibsen, a descendant of Anne of York, travelled from the University of Leicester to the Cathedral on a route which included places that had historical links to Richard III. At Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre, there was a service and a 21 gun-salute, and there were also services/ceremonies at Fenn Lane Farm, Sutton Cheney, Market Bosworth and St Nicholas Church.

After Richard III’s remains were received at Leicester Cathedral, there was an evening service of Compline with a sermon preached by Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the Catholic Archbishop of Westminster.

For those of you who were unable to watch the live coverage of yesterday’s procession and services, you can watch videos and browse photos at the following links:

You can download a copy of the Richard III Reinterment Week Programme at, but here is a list of the main events in Leicester:

  • Monday 23rd March – Leicester Cathedral open 9.30am-12.30pm and 2pm-5pm for viewing of Richard III’s coffin. 5pm – Requiem Mass for the repose of the soul of Richard III, at Holy Cross Church, the Catholic parish church and Dominican priory, Wellington Street, Leicester.
  • Tuesday 24th March – Leicester Cathedral open 9.30am-12.30pm and 2pm-5pm for viewing of Richard III’s coffin. 5.30pm – Vespers sung by the Dominican friars in Leicester Cathedral.
  • Wednesday 25th March – Leicester Cathedral open 9.30am-12.30pm for viewing of Richard III’s coffin.
  • Thursday 26th March – Richard III’s Reinterment. 10.45am – Procession of significant guests from Leicester Guildhall to Leicester Cathedral. 11.30am – Service of Reinterment of the Remains of King Richard III in the presence of the Most Right Reverend Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury and senior clergy from both dioceses, and other Christian denominations alongside representatives of the World Faiths.
  • Friday 27th March – Service of Reveal of the Tomb and Celebration for King Richard III. 3pm – 5.15pm
    & 6.15pm – 9pm – Richard III’s sealed tomb will be on display to the public. 6pm – A special Richard III peal of the bells at the Cathedral.

There are more events mention in the programme. The Richard III Society has organised events for Reinterment Week – see for more details – as has Bosworth Battlefield and Heritage Centre – see

22 thoughts on “Richard III Reinterment Week”

  1. The Daily Mail headline declares that “Even Richard would be bored of himself by now.”

    I doubt that he would be bored of himself. On the other hand, he could well be bored WITH himself, and would surely be horrified by such appalling grammar….

    D M – please send these unforgivably sloppy journalists on a language course immediately!

    1. Claire says:

      I think they were quoting someone but journalism is definitely getting sloppy.I was watching TV coverage yesterday and was doing constant face palms with the mistakes they were making: Philippa Langley and John Ashdown-Hill being described as “descendants” of Richard III, Michael Ibsen being described as a “direct descendant” and even “from Richard III’s loins”, Richard being referred to as Richard of York, his resting place being described as a “pauper’s grave”, Richard being a king “from more than 300 years ago” etc. etc. You’d think that presenters and journalists would read up on it.

      1. Dawn Pinnataro says:

        That’s because the TV ‘journalists’ / presenters are just talking heads; some lucky underpaid junior staff typed up the text, gave it to talking head to review as their own and read it on the air! So if facts not correct, they could say, well, somebody else did the research!

        I have very little respect for most of the TV ‘journalists’.

      2. Banditqueen says:

        There have been some great clangers, but I think overall the media have made some efforts to be positive, just the Daily Mail have to pick one bored idiot and run with it. Most people have been positive. Many thousands positive, many millions watching, one idiot on Twitter, I know what I would report.

      3. Jillian says:

        Technically, Michael Ibsen is a collateral descendant, so the term ‘descendant’ is OK to use. However, it is rather misleading, as most people would automatically think of direct descendants in this context.

        I thought that a three hour long programme would be over the top, but there was enough variety to keep me watching. The people of Leicester certainly turned out in force to watch the procession, and anything which stimulates interest in history must be good. I don’t think that Jon Snow did a bad job as a presenter considering the diversity of the information presented and the events being shown, far from being a mere ‘talking head’. And I enjoyed the part where he visited his cousin, the historian and broadcaster Peter Snow, and discovered that they were both directly descended from the Stanley family whose treachery at Bosworth ensured Richard’s defeat and death.

        1. Claire says:

          Sky’s expert actually called Ibsen a direct descendant and said he was “from Richard III’s loins”. The Sky coverage was terrible in that way, so many mistakes. I only watched it because someone I know was being interviewed.

  2. Rowan says:

    “… The first two constructions, bored with and bored by, are the standard ones. The third, bored of, is more recent than the other two and it’s become extremely common. In fact, the Oxford English Corpus contains almost twice as many instances of bored of than bored by. It represents a perfectly logical development of the language, and was probably formed on the pattern of expressions such as tired of or weary of. Nevertheless, some people dislike it and it’s not fully accepted in standard English. It’s best to avoid using it in formal writing.”

  3. Banditqueen says:

    It is wonderful to see the respect shown to our King Richard iii after 530 years by thousands of people from all over the world. More than 35,000 people lined the route in Leicester alone. The 2000 lucky enough to get tickets at the Battlefield service came from many thousands more disappointed as the site had to suspend sales as many more than they could sell applied within the first ten minutes. Thousands more lined the rest of the route, millions watched on television, ipad, phone and large screens. Multi cultures of people, from many different religions came to see a King who ruled for a little over two years. Little children of local schools came to sing and give flowers on the herse, a little girl placed the lovingly made crown on the coffin. 700 people said Mass for him yesterday, several hundred other people attended the service on Sunday, the ballot for seats could have filled Leicester Cathedral several times over. Many, many people have been going to be seeing the King in repose. This is not a circus as the Daily Rag called it, quoting one jealous person from York, who would have done this the same way, it was respectful and dignified. The so called critics on Twitter are a small unrepresentative number of bored people most likely not interested in history or being educated and are more likely to be critical of the fact that Twitter is full of the Richard iii experiences and not the usual juvenile natter they engage in. The Mail has picked up on one bit of natter in order to create the impression that some experts were critical and put the opposite reporting down to the rest of the very popular and positive reporting in the other media. I don’t give crediance to idiots on Twitter, who if they are bored should switch off and go and do something less interesting instead.

    I have been following the progress of our late King Richard and believe people have been dignified, respectful, not misbehaving as was erroneously reported by the Mail, even the Sun was positive. The media and public response has been positive, even the debates about his character and reputation, with one notorious exception, and I think Dr Starkey should apologise to Philippa Langley, without whom none of this would have been possible, have been mostly conducted fairly and with balance and respect. I particularly liked Helen Castor and her analysts of the ceremonial and historical perspective. The service and the progress was respectfully witnessed, reported, and shared across the world. Both Channel 4 and the BBC have done a great job and the programs sensitive to the great solemnity of his religious, personal and historical occasion. Instead of being bored, maybe the ONE person who moaned should have taken time to study the sources, the background and to appreciate the truly unique moments we have the privilege to be witnessing. This is living history, we are not likely to see this again, please make the most of these things, you will be the losers, NOT we who have shared and wondered at the burial of a long lost King.

    Richard iii rest in peace and let perpetual light shine upon him. Amen.

    1. Jillian says:

      Claire, the fact that you were watching Sky rather than Channel 4 explains your comment about the direct descendants, which wasn’t said in the main programme. Overall, Channel 4’s coverage was pretty good, as Bandit Queen said, probably because they produced the original documentary about the finding of Richard’s skeleton and have shown other related programmes since.

      Yes, David Starkey was over the top but he usually does this in debates to provoke a reaction – he is much more measured in his books and his own documentaries. And I have to say that I find Philippa Langley a bit odd, whilst accepting that her work led to the discovery of the grave. She certainly missed the point about the fate of deposed kings which Dr. Starkey made. in contrast to Helen Castor. Instead, she cited Richard’s benign treatment of the Mortimer heir, but a potential heir would not be as big a threat as a deposed monarch.

      Richard wasn’t stupid – he couldn’t possibly have eliminated all heirs in the course of a two year reign without becoming even more unpopular than he already was. Even Henry VIII couldn’t eliminate all the potential Yorkist – and he had a solid grip on the throne and thirty six years in which to do it!


      1. Banditqueen says:

        Richard iii did not have anything to do with the Mortimer heir. This had me chasing shadows as I knew Richard iii did not have a Mortimer heir or rival as the male line had ceased. His father was from the female line, Anne Mortimer, and I thought Helen had mistakenly referred to Richard lll, instead of Richard ii. Only on replaying the program did I realize I am not going gaga. I was right, the referene was to the Mortimer heir of Richard ii, spared by Henry IV, who prevented the Southampton plot. It’s Philippa Langley who used this as an example to show that monarchs who usurp the throne dont always kill rival heirs. The pannel were not referring to Richard lll, but Richard ii and Henry IV. It’s as well the Mortimer family were spared as their descendants gave us Richard iii, through his maternal grandmother. Richard, not only had no need to kill the Princes in 1483, he also took under his protection his brother George’s children, who although barred from the throne via their father’s attainment, were still rivals with a compelling claim. He also provided for his sisters children and some sources suggest, but are not clear, he may have been thinking about making John de la Pole, Earl of Lincoln his heir, after Edward of Middleham, his ten years old son sadly died. Had Richard been the monster painted by Shakespeare 100 years after his death, why stop at two heirs who had been declared illegitimate, why not kill the lot?

        1. Jillian says:

          Many thanks, that explains the confusion.

          It was indeed Philippa Langley who made reference to a ‘Mortimer heir’ but perhaps my wording made it sound as though it was Helen Castor. I was puzzled by the reference at the time because it sounded as though Ms. Langley was talking about Richard III rather than Richard II and I couldn’t think who she could be referring to, but wrongly assumed that she had one of the de la Poles in mind.

          However, I still think that the weight of the evidence points towards Richard being responsible for the deaths of both princes. Although they had been declared illegitimate, many believed this to have been a lie invented at Richard’s behest as an excuse to seize the throne. Whilst they remained alive, they would have remained a threat and focus for rebellion.

          The fact that other potential heirs remained alive during Richard’s reign does not, in my view, absolve him from guilt, and you do not have to take Shakespeare’s portrait as gospel to believe this. He may not have set out with the intention of murdering his nephews but he was a ruthless man living in bloody and unsettled times. Ordering the killings in a fit of panic in the face of a looming rebellion (which seemed to be Dr. Castor’s view) or as a calculated risk which backfired (Dr. Starkey’s) are still more likely than any alternative offered by the Ricardians.

  4. John Boulter says:

    Richard III in fact was never king, he stole the crown from his nephew who he had locked up in the Tower and later killed along with his younger brother. Their father was killed by whom? The only person to gain anything from his death was Richard So really why are we calling him a King.

    1. Banditqueen says:

      Richard iii believed that he was the lawful successor to Edward IV because he was presented with evidence, since lost, and testimony from Bishop Shillington, that he had witnessed the contract or marriage between Eleanor Talbot Butler and his same brother, Edward. He claimed that because of this, the marriage of Edward IV and Elizabeth Woodville was not lawful, so the children were not legitimate. He was therefore the lawful King, not Edward V. As young Edward V was proclaimed King and ruled for about eleven weeks, he is recognised as a King in the list of rulers. Richard iii was accepted as King, invited to take the crown, in a set piece of theatre, reluctantly accepted of course, although 20, 000 loyal northern troops surrounded various places in the city, and was anointed and crowned. He thus gained legitimacy through sacred election in Westminster Abbey. Whether you believe that he was a rightful King or not, good or bad, murderer or Shakespeare’s victim, if the boys were declared illegitimate, which they were by Act of Parliament, if it was shown that the boys had a weaker claim, once Richard lll was crowned, he was legally King. Both Richard iii and Henry Tudor, seized the crown. Debate over whether both or either were usurpers or not go on and depend on which sources you believe. Richard took the throne by the construction of a convenient truth which he believed in good faith, Henry Tudor won the throne in battle, the battle in which Richard was killed “fighting bravely in the very crush of the battle”.

      We acknowledge Richard iii as King because he was. He was legally crowned, he was anointed and he acted with the power and authority of a King, reigning for 777 days, almost two years. Richard iii was the natural successor to Edward IV if the boys died or in this case were not legitimate. Personally I don’t believe that the boys were illegitimate, but I sincerely believe that Richard did not have them killed, most certainly no count would convict him, so therefore due to the lack of evidence about their fate, Richard iii is innocent until proven guilty. However I acknowledge that he was a proper King, his claim was legitimate, far better than that of Henry Tudor, which was legalized by Parliament. There is no question that he was regarded as King of England, even by his enemies and successor, so there can be no doubt today that he was a King and should be buried as a King. In fact, some of the same arguments over seizure of the crown, lawful marriage, who was the rightful person to be queen, could be applied to whether or not Anne Boleyn was a legitimate queen, or did she usurp the title and place of Queen Katherine. Perhaps it comes down to nothing more than personal belief and interpretation of the sources, history and the facts.

      I am not sure about your question: their father was killed by whom? Edward IV was not killed by anyone. Although some people have tried to claim that Richard poisoned him, this is a myth. Edward died after an illness caught after he went fishing in the frozen Thames, and this was made worse through eating under cooked sea food. The contemporary evidence does not accuse Richard, this is a late invention.

      1. Hannele says:

        To Banditqueen

        I do not believe there was any hard evidence. If there had been, the case would have presented in the canon court which alone had a right to decide if a marriage and children were legal or not.

        Besides, Titulus Regius tells no date of the supposed pre-contract nor the name of the priest or witnesses, or, if there were not any, how to whom and when the late lady told of the incident. In a word, all is only hearsay.

        If there had been any truth of the matter, Edward IV had ample time to get the thring settled with the help of the Pope. After all, John of Gaunt could legitimize his bastards by Katherine Swynford.

      2. Hannele says:

        To BanditQueen

        It is true that no court would condemn Richard, because there are enough evidence, not even whether the princes were murdered

        However, history is no court. One could not say almost anything, if one had to have have proof demanded by the court. In research, there are different interpretations and on the basis of sources some are more likely and others are less likely.

  5. Sandy Acathan says:

    I was surprised but pleased by the response to Richard III ‘s re-internment. However, I was appalled by the obvious viciousness of (Lord) Julian Fellowes who called him a killer ! No sir ! This has not been proven and the much maligned character of King Richard is based upon propaganda of the time and Shakespear a hundred years later.
    It was a period of violence it is true, but the Richard III Society will be dissecting, sifting and searching to expose the truth about the Princes. There were other people in the frame who would have wanted these two youngsters out of the way apart from Richard – if indeed he did…..
    So King Richard III I trust you now rest in peace and in a far more deserving place than where you were found.

    1. Banditqueen says:

      I entirely agree. Julian Fellows was horrible. The respect and dignity of the services has really moved me deeply. Richard now finally rests in peace. Amen.

    2. Hannele says:

      To Sandy Acathan

      Richard killed Hastings and others without trial, so he can be called a killer. But such were many kings.

      1. Banditqueen says:

        No, Hastings was legally executed, as Richard was High Steward of England and Hastings was taken under arms in the Council Chamber, it was right for him to be executed summarily.

        The three others arrested were tried by the Duke of Northumberland and Anthony Woodville was conspiring against his life.

        Two of those arrested were actually freed.

        The only other summary execution was of the Duke of Buckingham who was taken having led a rebellion. The law of the Court of Arms allowed for this. As you say this was common, particularly during the Wars of the Roses, when executions often happened immediately or within a few days of the battle as those on the other side were seen as traitors to the victorious King, of which at a number of points there were two. Horrible but unfortunately, the law. Richard at least put an end to that. Even Henry Tudor grabbed William Catesby and beheaded him a couple of days after Bosworth, because he represented the Government of Richard iii, because Henry pre dated his reign. Kings and nobles in authority waved law and authority around like a flag. I love history but I gave up on the monarchy a long time ago. Now I merely seek historical truth rather than propaganda, not easy when many of the histories are altered or written by the other side.

  6. Hannele says:

    I do think that the central question in Richard’s career is not whether he murdered the princes or even whether he took the crown only because he believe in the pre-contract story. In both cases, he was forced to act by the circumstances. But let us look at the earlier happenings where he had a freedom of choice.

    First, the meeting on the road to London where Richard arrested lord Rivers, Edward V*s maternal uncle and guardian, and had the person of the king in his custody. Was there a Woodiville plot as Richard claimed? Mancini says that the arms were for the Scottish campaign. the proof against it is also that the Woodvilles had ample time to get Edward V to London but had no hurry to so.

    Would it really have been impossible to Richard to act as a member of the Council?

    The result of Richard’s action was that Edward V who loved his maternal relatives became hostile towards Richard. Could Richard win him over?

    The second happening is the execution of Hastings without any trial. Was there really a plot against Richard as he claimed or did he at least believe it was? His wild accusers about sorcery does not tell of sound mind.

    Or was all acting and Richard had already decided to take the throne? In that case, he had first to get out of his way Hastings who, the dearest friend, of Edward IV would have defended his son with all cost. Or it was even possibly that Hastings who knew Edward’s dalliances if anybody, and could vow that there was no pre-contract.

    Be it either way, Hasting’s execution meant that Richard could no more win Edward V’s good graces. Once his nephew become a king, he would have his revenge.

    1. Banditqueen says:

      Edward V was already King and Richard already had his nephews good graces, as the evidence shows. He acted as High Constable of England when he acted against Lord Hastings and as Lord Protector. It was a totally lawful act, supported by the Council and with no censorship by the citizens of London. Richard didn’t have a huge army to call upon, unlike Hastings who had a personal army of over 10,000 men. His northern reinforcements, required for the increase in crowds during the forthcoming coronation, had not even left York.

      Recently work on the only original copy of the Regis which survived the purge to destroy them all of Henry Vii, shows that the marriage was witnessed and no it was not hearsay, the man who had married them, the Bishop of Bath and Wells testified. Two English and a French source support the claims in the Titular Regis and more recently we now know a commission examined evidence for two weeks.

  7. Banditqueen says:

    Remember before God, his servant King Richard iii and all who died at Bosworth, having kept the faith. On this Fourth Anniversary of the honour done to King Richard iii with his Reinternment in Leicester Cathedral in 2015 may he rest in peace, honoured at last with the dignity denied him by the Tudor King, Henry Vii, who took the throne by force in battle. Rest in the Holy Light of the Saints, King Richard iii.

    Loyaltie Me Lie. Amen

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