|2nd October 1452|
Richard of York born
Richard was born at Fotheringhay Castle. He was the twelfth of thirteen children born to Richard, 3rd Duke of York and Cecily Neville. As a child he would have been known as 'Richard of York'.
|30th December 1460|
The Battle of Wakefield
The Duke of York leaves his stronghold at Sandal Castle and encounters the Lancastrian army under the duke of Somerset and Lord Clifford. Wakefield was a decisive Lancastrian victory during the War of the Roses.
|29th March 1461|
The Battle of Towton
The battle of Towton, North Yorkshire, was fought amidst the blistering cold and snow. The Yorkists fired arrows deep into the Lancastrian lines and, blinded by the snow, the Lancastrians were unable to respond, instead instigating indecisive hand-to-hand combat. Chroniclers contend that the fighting lasted longer than 10 hours, and after the battle England had a new king: Edward IV.
|1st November 1461|
Richard granted the Dukedom of Gloucester
After the coronation of his brother as Edward IV in June 1461 Richard was granted the title of Duke of Gloucester.
Childhood in Middleham
Following the death of his father Richard was put under the protection of Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick and from the ages of 9-12 spent much time at Neville's castle at Middleham in Wensleydale, Yorkshire where he learnt manly skills such as sword-fighting and horse-riding.
|12th August 1462|
Richard begins to acquire a princely estate
Richard was granted the lordships of Richmond in Yorkshire and Pembroke in Wales, as well as estates in East Anglia.
|2nd October 1462|
Governor of the North
On his birthday Richard was appointed Governor of the North, and also Constable of Gloucester and Corfe Castles. All these gifts made him one of the richest and therefore most powerful nobles in England. As Governor of the North he represented royal interests in securing the loyalty of the North for Edward IV's new Yorkist dynasty.
Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, changes sides
From the autumn of 1467 rumours began to spread that Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick was no longer a supporter of Edward IV.
Robin of Redesdale's Rebellion
Popular discontent with Edward IV's government fuelled a rebellion in Yorkshire, almost certainly instigated by Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick and led by Yorkshire gentry.
More plots were uncovered revealing Warwick's supporters in conspiracies to restore Henry VI to the throne.
George joins the rebellion against his brothers, Edward IV and Richard
George, Duke of Clarence and brother of Edward IV and Richard, joined Warwick's rebellion and sailed with him to Calais where he married Warwick's eldest daughter, Isabel Neville. Returning to England they raised forces in the south to join the rebels in Yorkshire.
Edward IV imprisoned in Middleham Castle
After being defeated in battle by rebel forces Edward IV was imprisoned first in Warwick Castle and then in Middleham until continuing disorder led to his release in September.
|17th October 1469|
Constable of England
Following his recovery of power Edward IV began to build up his supporters. Richard was appointed Constable of England, and the following month, Chief Justice of North Wales
|13th September 1470|
The defeat of Edward IV
Attempts at a reconciliation between Edward IV and the Earl of Warwick failed. Warwick, together with George Duke of Clarence, fled to France. Once again Warwick used his powerbase in Yorkshire to stir up a new rebellion against the Yorkists and built a strong alliance to restore Henry VI to the throne.They landed in Portsmouth in September and succeeded in forcing Edward IV into exile. Henry VI was restored to the throne, but his government was controlled by the Earl of Warwick ('the Kingmaker').
|2nd October 1470|
Exile in Flanders
Edward IV and Richard, Duke of Gloucester, fled to the Low Countries.
|11th March 1471|
Return to Yorkshire
Edward and Richard set sail for England to retake the throne for Edward. Storms blew them off course and they landed at Ravenspur in Holderness (now lost to coastal erosion), East Yorkshire, instead of East Anglia which was a stronghold of Yorkist support. They were not allowed to enter Hull and were admitted to the City of York only after Edward claimed that he was only seeking to win back his title to the Dukedom of York, not the throne of England.
|14th April 1471|
The death of Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick
After a short military campaign, in which Richard Duke of Gloucester acted as lieutenant to his brother Edward IV, Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick was killed at the battle of Barnet.
|4th May 1471|
Edward IV restored
Edward, Prince of Wales, son of Henry VI, was killed at the Battle of Tewkesbury. The defeat of the Lancastrian forces was followed by the restoration of Edward IV to the throne and Henry VI was confined to the Tower of London.
|18th May 1471|
Restoration to Power: Lieutenant of the North
Edward IV rapidly set about expanding Richard's titles, wealth and authority by transferring to him many of the titles and land previously enjoyed by Richard Earl of Warwick. As Richard neared the age of 21 he was appointed to a series of military positions in the north and west of Edward's Kingdom as High Sheriff of Cumberland, Lieutenant of the North and Commander-in Chief against the Scots, and Warden of the West Marches. He was also appointed Great Chamberlain and Lord High Admiral of England.
Richard and Anne Neville
Although apparently reconciled to Edward IV, George Duke of Clarence resented Richard's acquisition of former Neville lands and titles and opposed Richard's betrothal to his sister-in-law, Anne Neville. Anne had been held in virtual 'house arrest' by George after the death of her first husband, Edward Prince of Wales, at the Battle of Tewkesbury in May 1471. In February 1472 Richard 'rescued' her and proposed.
|12th July 1472|
Richard married Anne Neville
Richard married Anne Neville, the younger daughter of Richard Earl of Warwick, at Westminster Abbey. Through this marriage Richard was to assume much of the former Earl of Warwick's power base in the North including his magnificent castle at Middleham, where he had spent some of his childhood.
|14th July 1472|
Richard was confirmed in possession of the late Earl of Warwick's castles at Sheriff Hutton and Middleham in Yorkshire and Penrith in Cumberland.
Henry Percy, Earl of Northumberland
The Percy family were traditional rivals of the Nevilles in the north. In taking over the northern Neville lands Richard inherited this rivalry and perpetuated it in his acquistion of offices traditionally held by the Percies. The rivalry was halted however by an agreement imposed by the king's council and sealed when Henry Percy, Earl of Northumberland became one of Richard, Duke of York's retainers. This astute move substantially strengthened Richard's position in the North.
Securing the Middleham inheritance
Richard's mother-in-law, Anne de Beauchamp, left sanctuary to live in Middleham with her daughter and Richard. This strengthened Richard and Anne's claims to her parents' estates against other potential heirs including her cousin George, and her sister Isabel who was married to Richard's brother George, Duke of Clarence.
Dispute between Richard and George over Neville castles
Throughout 1471-5 the two brothers continued to quarrel over the division of the Neville estates, and especially over core strongholds such as Barnard Castle and Richmond.
Richard and Anne were admitted to the fraternity of the cathedral priory at Durham, reflecting both a veneration for St Cuthbert and an increasing reconcilation with the Bishop of Durham, another regional rival to Richard's authority in the North.
Richard acquires all the Neville lands in the North
After an attempt at the reconciliation of Richard and his brother George in their dispute over the Neville inheritance, Richard was confirmed in possession of all the Neville lands in the north, securing his dominance in the region.
|31st December 1476|
Richard III given six swans and six pikes
This was one of the first recorded of many gifts given by the City of York to Richard: a sign that he was using his influence in the north to win the support of the City Council.
Richard III and Anne Neville join the Corpus Christi Guild
The Guild was one of the largest and most prestigious in the city of York, attracting members from across the city, the county and beyond. Richard's mother, Cecily, had joined in 1455. The guild played a prominent part in the annual Corpus Christi processions which were associated with the city's famous cycle of religious drama staged by the city's crafts (the mystery plays).
Edward IV intends to repair the castle at York
As a recognition of its important role as a royal residence and gaol, as well as the city's strategic position, Edward IV declared his intention to repair the castle shortly after visiting the city in September 1478.
Campaigns into Scotland
When he led campaigns into Scotland in 1480-82, troops from York and the nearby Ainsty district formed part of his retinue. The last campaign, in July 1482, saw Berwick-upon-Tweed brought back into English hands after more than twenty years when the castle surrendered on 24 August 1482.
|24th June 1482|
Rumour investigation of 1482
On 24 June 1482 a citizen claimed to have overheard someone say that Richard did nothing for the city.
|14th February 1483|
Rumour investigation of 1483
On 14-15 February 1483 there was an expression of defiance against Richard III's influence in mayoral elections.
|9th April 1483|
Edward IV dies
Before his death Edward named his brother, Richard Duke of Gloucester, as Protector to his young son and heir, Edward. Edward IV was buried in the chapel of St George in Windsor Castle.
Richard III requests military aid from York
Soldiers were sent from York to London in June 1483 following Richard III's request for help against those said to be planning his destruction, the queen and her family, shortly before he claimed the throne on 26 June
|6th July 1483|
Coronation of Richard III
Richard III was crowned at Westminster Abbey on 6 July 1483.
|7th July 1483|
Royal progress northward
Soon after his magnificent coronation ceremony, Richard went northwards to be seen as king across his realm. The journey culminated in a spectacular reception in York, where the king and his entourage arrived on 29th August 1483.
|24th August 1483|
Richard III's son created Prince of Wales
The king's son had been created Prince of Wales on 24 August 1483 by his father at Nottingham, less than a week before the royal family arrived in York. This was a traditional title held by a monarch's eldest son and so was a celebration of Richard III's position as king as well as the elevation of his heir.
|28th August 1483|
Richard III receives gifts on his royal visit to York
For his visit to York in 1483 citizens noted on 28 August the collection of £448 towards gifts for the king and queen, including 500 marks in a cup of gold for Richard and £100 of gold in rich plate for his wife.
|29th August 1483|
Richard III arrives in York
Soon after the magnificent coronation ceremony, Richard III undertook a journey north, culminating in a spectacular reception in York on 29 August.
|7th September 1483|
The Creed play staged to honour the royal visit
The Creed Play was staged on 7 September 1483 as a special honour to mark Richard's visit to York. The play included twelve biblical scenes, including God and Christ enthroned, the nativity, crucifixion and resurrection. Citizens of York paid for the play, which was performed by the Corpus Christi guild.
|17th September 1483|
Richard III reduces York's annual fee farm
During his visit to York, Richard III called leading citizens to an audience at the Minster chapter house on 17 September 1483 to declare a substantial reduction in the city's annual fee farm.
Duke of Buckingham rebels
York's troops joined forces with those protecting Richard's throne against the rebellion of the duke of Buckingham in October 1483.
Council of the North residency at Sandal Castle
The Council of the North moved to Sandal in Yorkshire by July 20th 1484. In June 1484 Richard had visited Sandal and authorised the building of a new tower in the castle, and in October a new bakery and brewhouse.
|23rd July 1484|
Richard III commissions repairs at York Castle
Richard III agrees a programme of repair and rebuilding at York Castle, commissioned on 23 July 1484.
Work begins on the Minster College
Work began on the Minster college probably in August 1484 and may have been a reaction to the death a few months earlier of the king's son, Edward, at Middleham.
|5th April 1485|
Richard III combats rumour and sedition
The danger of slander spreading was vigorously confronted by Richard III and he wrote to the city on 5 April 1485 to demand their adherence to his commands against sedition. Citizens were ordered to arrest anyone heard to spread negative words about the king and immediately take down any inflammatory bills and newsletters.
|19th August 1485|
York sends last contingent to support Richard III
80 soldiers were sent to defend the king against Henry Tudor, leaving York on 19 August 1485 and probably arriving too late to fight at the battle of Bosworth on 22 August, where Richard was killed.
|22nd August 1485|
Richard III dies at the Battle of Bosworth
Richard III is killed at the battle of Bosworth on 22 August 1485.
|14th May 1491|
Rumour investigation of 1491
Open criticism of the former king remained contentious in York. An argument recorded on 14 May 1491 saw John Payntour accuse schoolmaster William Burton of calling Richard a hypocrite and crookback who had been buried like a dog in a ditch.