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Richard III: All options still open for king's last resting place, says Leicester Cathedral


All options are still open for Richard III's last resting place, Leicester Cathedral has insisted, in response to public calls for a tomb rather than a stone tablet memorial.

Acting Dean, the Rev Canon Barry Naylor, said no final decision had been made about what kind of memorial would honour the medieval king when his bones are reinterred next May.

An architect's brief released on Wednesday, lent heavily in favour of a stone slab, saying the Cathedrals Fabric Commission of England would not accept a "large table-top tomb".

It also reminded people "Richard demonstrated both the honourable and dishonourable characteristics of human beings".

However, in an online poll by the Mercury, more than 1,200 people had last night voted in favour of a tomb, compared with 80 favouring a tablet.

Mr Naylor said: "All options are still open. But the brief is now in the hands of the architects and they'll come up with a design and present it to us later this year.

"They could advise a tomb is the best way forward.

"The Cathedral Chapter (clergy, members of the congregation and people appointed by the bishop) has expressed a preference for a stone ledger – and that might be what happens – but there's no final decision yet."

Philippa Langley, who began the search for Richard III four years ago, said: "The response to the poll has been absolutely amazing.

"I'm so happy to see people share our vision for a tomb for Richard."

On Thursday, the cathedral arranged a meeting with the tomb's designers.

Mr Naylor said: "We're meeting with the society and then maybe we can get the architects involved.

"At the moment, we're meeting and having conversations with lots of people – it's a very busy time for us."

The Richard III Society has welcomed the meeting. Ms Langley said: "It's fantastic that the cathedral said we could have some input, but I never thought we'd be allowed to meet with the architects.

"We'd love that – I can't tell you how much.

"We know any designs have to be in line with certain criteria and we'd love to work with the architects to come up with something everybody is happy with."

The Richard III Society has spent more than two years on its design and has raised the £30,000 needed to build it.

Money for a stone tablet would be collected through donations from visitors and benefactors.

Richard III: All options still open for king's  last resting place, says Leicester Cathedral

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