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  1. ITV Report

Richard III Factfile

Artists impression of how Richard III looked Photo: University of Leicester

Richard III, was born on October 2nd 1452 at Fotheringay Castle in Northamptonshire. He was the last Yorkist King. He was the son of Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York, and Cecily Neville. In 1460 his father and older brother died at the Battle of Wakefield. The following year Richard's brother Edward became King; he made Richard the Duke of Gloucester.

In 1470 the brothers were exiled as Henry VI returned to the throne. In 1471 the brothers returned to England, where Richard contributed to the Yorkist victories at Barnet and Tewekesbury. Those victories helped restore Edward to the throne.

Twelve years later Edward died. Richard was named as protector of the realm for Edward's son and successor, Edward V. Richard imprisoned Edward V and his young brother, Richard, in the Tower of London. The two boys were never seen again.

In July 1483 Richard became King. An act of Parliament had declared the nephews illegitimate as Richard's brother was alleged to have had a secret marriage making his marriage to the brothers' Mother invalid. The Duke of Buckingham started a rebellion against Richard. Though it quickly collapsed it did erode Richard's power and support among the aristocracy and gentry.

By August 1485 Richard faced another challenger - Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond. On the 22nd August Tudor's supporters took on the King at the Battle of Bosworth. Although the King had more forces, a number of his key lieutenants defected. Richard refused to leave the battlefield and he was killed. Henry Tudor took the throne as Henry VII.

More than 520 years after his death, Richard III's body has now been found under a car park in Leicester.