Bones display a conflict of sentiment and feeling
I wrote a passionate letter on September 21 ("Royal bones ban is elitist") strongly urging the public showing of the body found in Greyfriars, which has, to no-one's surprise, turned out indeed to be that of Richard III.
At that stage, the word from the officials I spoke to was that the remains would not to be shown to the general public and that an image or hand-drawn sketch was all we could expect to see.
Clearly, there has been some radically different thinking at work since then and now the question has arisen that with all the photographic and film coverage of the dig and scientific investigation, should the skeleton be displayed for a limited time in Leicester?
There are two schools of thought. One holds that it reduces the great discovery to a sideshow, the other that it is entirely in keeping with our culture of openness and devotion to our historical roots.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
Perhaps it boils down to a conflict of sentiment and feeling.
Sentiment says it is disrespectful, even ghoulish, to display the remains, while feeling says it is a legitimate way of paying homage to an historical legend and a chance for those who wish to pay their last respects to a human being.
I am very much in favour of the body being shown for a short period so those who wish to may see it before it receives a burial for all time in Leicester Cathedral.
Those who do not wish to can pay their respects by staying away.
I say let us have a last chance to see our once-great king.
Laurence Breedon, Leicester.
Your front page "Hands off our Richard!" (Mercury, February 6) made dramatic reading, while "The king under the car park" made a good headline, but neither are very factual.
It seems the approximate location of these royal remains on the site of a former friary was known for years or even centuries, so I wonder why nobody bothered to search for them until last year – perhaps because of his terrible reputation?
Now, he has suddenly become "our Richard" and some sort of local hero, simply because of the great publicity generated by what started as an academic excavation.
If the area where he was found had been developed and covered by a new building in 1914 or 1940 instead of fortuitously used as a car park, would the excavation have gone ahead or been deemed to be too inconvenient and expensive?
What has really happened is that our city leaders have realised the potential tourist value of having a royal tomb.
I agree, we should make the most of this opportunity to boost the economy. But please don't dress this up as some sort of homage to the skeleton of a man who had been ignored for over 500 years.
Maybe the proposed Jubilee Square could be used to house a monument and be renamed Plantagenet Square.
Jeff Rosenthal, Bushby.
While we are on the subject of Richard III, may I mention I can trace my ancestry, through the female line, to Baron Robert de Haverland, Baron of Normandy in 1160.
The ancestry route is Boulton, Selwood, Barnes, Havilland, de Havilland, de Haverland.
I first flew a de Havilland Moth in 1944, when starting my training in the RAF to become a fighter pilot. (The war ended before its completion in Southern Rhodesia).
My great-uncles Barnes were successful gold miners during the Klondike gold rush at the end of the 19th century and mentioned in three books about the sinking of the Princess Sophia in 1918.
Harold W Boulton, Stoney Stanton.
I was delighted to learn the individual exhumed at Greyfriars in September was Richard III.
I have followed Richard III events over the years from my own visits, and Leicester family input.
The "HQ" signature on my letter to the Leicester Mercury in 1965 (pictured) is minus a full name because I was a member of the US Air Force and was advised to do so.
I am Henry Quesada, married to a Leicester lady. We are both Richard III buffs residing in Arizona.
We have smiled often as more was done to promote Richard III to his rightful standing among British royalty over the years.
We were pleased to see his statue in Castle Garden on our September visit and, earlier, his stone in Leicester Cathedral.
We saw Michael Ibsen at the cathedral and his lollipop.
Leicester has so much history and historical neighbours, such as the villages of Rothley, Bosworth, Kibworth and Smeeton Westerly, not to overlook Leicester's Guildhall, The Magazine, Wygston's House, Castle Gardens and Bradgate Park.
Leicesterites be proud! You now have your very own royal member to boast about, King Richard III .
Henry Quesada, Nevada.
Nigel Mutimer asked did anyone know why King Richard booked into the Blue Boar inn rather Leicester Castle.
He understood on the evening of August 21, 1485, there was to be karaoke and a late bar.