Give king's remains a state burial
AN MP has called for a state funeral for Richard III, if a skeleton unearthed last week turns out to be the lost king.
Chris Skidmore, right, said a "full state funeral" should be arranged if DNA tests confirm the find, under a Leicester car park.
But his campaign, contained in a Parliamentary petition, was branded "a ridiculous idea" by Labour MP Kerry McCarthy.
Archaeologists say there is "strong circumstantial evidence" that they have found the grave of the king, who died at the battle of Bosworth in 1485.
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The remains have spinal abnormalities and a "cleaved-in skull" that suggest it could be Richard III.
Mr Skidmore, who has written a book on the Battle of Bosworth and is planning a Richard III biography, has tabled an Early Day Motion at Westminster, noting the find and calling for ceremonial burial. He said: "If it does turn out to be his bones, it's the most remarkable discovery of the last 50 years. It would be of huge significance."
The Tory MP said every other monarch had been given a state funeral and said it might help generate tourism revenue.
He added: "You would probably recoup the cost in terms of the international interest it would spark."
But Ms McCarthy, the Labour MP for Bristol East, was not convinced.
She said: "It's a ridiculous idea. He's voting through cuts to support for disabled people, cuts to public services etc, and yet he thinks we should spend money on this."
She said there should be a proper burial if the bones are the king's, but not "the full works".
One MP, Tory veteran Peter Bottomley, has signed the motion so far.