CHESTER Cathedral seems unlikely to be joining the race for King Richard III’s remains, according to an eminent city historian.
The recent discovery of the king’s bones in a Leicester car park has reawakened interest in the fascinating and controversial monarch.
Diana Dunn, emeritus research fellow in the University of Chester’s department of history and archaeology, told the Chronicle: “Despite the fact that Richard, Duke of Gloucester, who became King Richard III in July 1483, has often been described as a northerner, there is no evidence to indicate that he ever visited the city of Chester either before or after he became king.
“His roots lay in Yorkshire and he made his home at Middleham Castle with the city of York an important power base.”
She added:“Royal connections with Chester were well established by the 15th century with the tradition of the monarch creating his eldest son Prince of Wales and Earl of Chester from the time of Edward I.
“Indeed, one of Richard’s first acts as king was to invest his only son Edward in a ceremony held at York Minster on September 8, 1483.
“This was the culmination of a royal progress that had taken Richard from London to York via Reading, Oxford, Gloucester, Warwick, Leicester, Nottingham and Pontefract to try to win the support of his subjects through grants of royal favours.”
Chester missed out but nonetheless, in 1484, King Richard granted the city a reduction in an annual payment known as the fee farm.
“The contest for the burial place for Richard III’s bones has only just begun but there does not appear to be any particular historical connection with the city that would warrant Chester Cathedral joining the claimants,” added Mrs Dunn.