Medieval dig confirms site of old church
Archaeologists searching for the remains of King Richard III have confirmed they have found the church where he is believed to have been buried.
Last week, after digging two trenches in a city centre car park in Leicester, the researchers said they had found ancient walls they thought belonged to the church of the Franciscan friary, where the defeated king was buried following the Battle of Bosworth in 1485.
They excavated a third trench this weekend and yesterday said their suspicions were correct.
Lead archaeologist Richard Buckley, of the University of Leicester, said: "The discoveries so far leave us in no doubt that we are on the site of Leicester's Franciscan friary, meaning we have crossed the first significant hurdle of the investigation.
Cheap Van Insurance For 17,18 & 19 Year Old Drivers - Call Insure365 01782 898188, Free Legal Protection Cover Included valued at £25.00!
Terms: 1 Voucher Per Customer
Contact: 01782 898188
Valid until: Monday, June 24 2013
"It is remarkable that the third trench has now made us certain that we have located the Friary church – not only a huge step forward in the search for the remains of Richard III, but also important new evidence for one of Leicester's major religious buildings, lost for over 400 years."
Historical evidence suggests that after the battle, Richard III's stripped body was brought to Leicester and buried in the church of the Franciscan friary, known as Greyfriars.
Over time, the exact location has been lost but experts began digging up the city council-owned Greyfriars car park, in New Street, where it is believed the church once stood, in the hope of finding the king's remains.
The third trench was dug on Saturday to clarify the alignment of some of the walls which had already been revealed.
The next task for the Time Tomb Team will be to find the location of the choir and high altar. This might involve extending the trenches.