A special service marking the end of the king’s long journey from his forgotten grave under a council car park to a place of honour in Leicester Cathedral was being held today - a day after his reinterment presided over by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby.
Overnight, the king’s 2.3-tonne tombstone, with its Christian cross carved on the top, was lifted carefully into place.
The setting of the great slab of Yorkshire Swaledale stone marks the end of a week in which the king was reinterred, with the Queen calling today’s ceremony a moment of “great national significance”. Later in the day a service of solemn choral evensong was held at York Minster, where many had argued he should be reburied, honouring the monarch’s White Rose county links.
Organisers of events in Leicester aimed to rebury the king with the “dignity and honour” he was denied in death, after his original burial in a hastily-dug grave in the old Greyfriars church. The cathedral said it was expecting “a considerable number of visitors from all over the world” to come and see the memorial.
Today’s service of reveal was to include interpretative dance charting the rediscovery of Richard’s grave, the science behind identifying his mortal remains and his reburial. A banner with the king’s coat of arms, provided by the Richard III Society, was hung over the tomb in the ambulatory during the service.