Thursday, February 07, 2013
On losing Kings of England in car parks
Richard III is certainly not the first monarch to be buried under a car park, and he certainly won't be the last. For instance, I once saw Prince William wondering the facilities at Asda in Weymouth after buying a large quantity of beer with his army chums. I haven't seen much of him in the last six years, so I suspect like his long-dead ancestor, he's still there.
Having spent most of my life in Reading, one of the town's claims to fame it that King Henry I is buried in Reading Abbey. Or rather, he would be, except for the fact that they've lost him, and the considered opinion is that he's probably under the staff car park at next door's Reading Prison or beneath a nearby Catholic School.
While Oscar Wilde was sitting there in Reading Gaol, writing his famous slab of doggerel about a man condemned to die, he was not many yards away from the forgotten grave of the son of William the Conqueror. One of the town's more embarrassing tales that they don't like to talk about.
However, there is a further connection with poor, dead Richard III. Now that they've announced the line-up for Reading Festival, now is the best time of year to sort out your accommodation for the weekend camping when it's at its cheapest:
Yes - drumroll - Now is the winter of our discount tents
I'll get me coat