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A major conference to be held later this year at Market Bosworth, Leicestershire, just a few miles from the battlefield on which King Richard III met his violent end, will mark the 20th anniversary of an organization that was formed in the monarch’s memory.
The Richard III Foundation, Inc., an international educational organization dedicated to studying the life and times of England’s last Plantagenet king, has been striving for two decades to restore the monarch’s reputation and rescue the historic Richard III from the Shakespearean caricature.
Founded in 1993 by CEO/President Joe Ann Ricca, the Foundation has grown from a small organization in the United States to a worldwide presence with over 800 members and branches in the United Kingdom and Australia. Working tirelessly to challenge the popular view of King Richard III, the Foundation is staffed by a body of volunteers who generously donate their time and skills to advancing research into all aspects of English history during the period in which Richard lived, and especially into the conflict known as the Wars of the Roses.
Over the last two decades the Foundation has established itself as one of the most well-respected organizations of its kind, sponsoring academic events and publications, providing research grants into the Ricardian period, and assisting local historians and scholars with research costs. It has supported educational projects as well as local heritage and battlefield preservation societies, working closely with the Bosworth Battlefield Centre, the Battlefields Trust, English Heritage, the Tewkesbury Battlefield Society, the Towton Battlefield Society and many others. Its continued presence in the media has challenged the Shakespearean caricature of Richard III, stripping away the propaganda to present a more accurate portrait of a man who was neither a villain nor a saint, but, rather, a man of his times.
With honorary patrons that include the celebrated English actor and historian Robert Hardy, and the distinguished historian Professor Anne Curry, the Foundation has garnered support from a wide variety of sources. The recent discovery of King Richard’s remains brought the Foundation into the spotlight and it has been widely called upon to provide expert insight into one of the most enigmatic figures in history.
Since 2002, the Foundation has conducted an annual conference in the UK, featuring speeches and presentations by some of the foremost authorities on late-medieval English history. This year’s conference will take place on Saturday, October 12, and will include a tour of Bosworth battlefield, viewed through the eyes of Henry Tudor’s ultimately victorious forces. In addition, on Monday October 21, the Foundation will host a wreath-laying ceremony in memory of King Richard III at York Minster.
For further information on this year’s Bosworth conference, or to join The Richard III Foundation, please visit the Foundation’s website www.richard111.com or email [email protected].