WHAT THE LOOKING FOR
RICHARD PROJECT HAS ACCOMPLISHED
WHAT THE LOOKING FOR RICHARD PROJECT HAS ACCOMPLISHED
The LOOKING FOR RICHARD PROJECT (LFR) was responsible
for the rediscovery of the remains of King Richard III on 25 August 2012.
Philippa Langley is the LFR project leader, and ‘the client’ in respect of agreements
relating to the archaeology and its follow-up. She also personally obtained all
the required permissions from the three respective owners to investigate the
car parks (as detailed below).
- Discovered Richard III’s mtDNA sequence.
- Found new evidence to confirm Richard III’s burial at the Leicester Greyfriars.
- Found evidence that Richard III’s body had not been dug up at the Reformation.
- Found evidence that the remains of the church in which Richard III had been buried were probably still accessible beneath the northern end of the Leicester Social Services Department car park.
- Persuaded Leicester City Council to agree to the excavation of the car park.
- Conceived and produced the Reburial Document that outlined the ethos of the search project and blueprint for procedures following discovery.
- Produced a suggested tomb design for Richard III’s reburial.
- Notified the Ministry of Justice of the unprecedented search, obtained guidance regarding its ethos, and provided them with the Reburial Document.
- Notified the royal household, obtaining appointment as representative of HRH the Duke of Gloucester and providing them with the Reburial Document.
- A copy of Reburial Document was welcomed by the then Dean of Leicester (Vivienne Faull).
- Secured undertakings for the honourable and dignified treatment of King Richard's remains, including an agreement that the remains themselves should not be publicly displayed, and restricting the use of images as far as possible.
- Obtained written permission from Leicester City Council to excavate the Social Services car park.
- Secured agreement that once Richard III’s remains had been found and identified, they would be handed over to Philippa Langley and/or her representatives without delay and taken to a place of sanctity and rest to await reburial.
- Arranged for the search project to be filmed for a Channel 4 documentary.
- Obtained permission from private owners to excavate the former Grammar School car park.
- Secured a research bursary from the Richard III Society to enable the Archaeological Desk-Based Assessment to proceed.
- Commissioned a team of archaeologists to carry out the dig.
- Secured advance agreement from University management for the availability of academic expertise that would be required following any discovery, including commissioning a Psychological Profile of Richard III.
- Obtained permissions for, and commissioned a Ground Penetrating Radar Survey of all three car park sites - New Street, Social Services, and the former Grammar School.
- Raised a private fund from the Richard III Society and its members to finance the GPR Survey.
- Raised a project fund to finance the planned two week excavation and associated technical investigations, principally from Ricardians and the Richard III Society membership.
- Launched a successful International Appeal to Ricardians to save the project from cancellation, following partial collapse of the funding.
- Gave instruction that the human remains discovered on the first day of the dig be exhumed and examined. This was undertaken upon payment of an extra exhumation charge required by the archaeologists. (These remains, found in the northern end of the Social Services car park, then proved to be those of Richard III).
- Took formal steps to prevent the remains of Richard III being put on full public display.
Produced books chronicling the search for Richard III and associated history.