The creation of a new King Richard III visitor centre in the heart of Leicester’s Old Town has now got the go ahead from councillors.
The stunning 150-year-old former Alderman Newton School building at St Martin’s Place will be transformed into a stunning new permanent exhibition and visitor experience telling the story of King Richard’s life, death and rediscovery. The site which is right next to the Greyfriars grave site, where the monarchs remains were unearthed was purchased by the city council last year.
The proposals to transform the former School building into the Centre were approved at a meeting of Leicester City Council’s planning and development control committee on Wednesday, August 7.
The project which will cost £4million, will transform both the inside and outside of the Victorian Gothic building to create two floors of exhibition space and a new covered area allowing visitors access to the grave in which Richard’s remains were discovered last summer.
Designs also include a new courtyard garden, glass entrance hall, viewing balcony, cafe and visitor entry from Peacock Lane.
Leicester City Mayor Peter Soulsby said: “I am very pleased that these stunning designs to bring new life to this beautiful old building has been approved, and work can now progress on creating a very fitting visitor experience telling the story of King Richard.”
The completed visitor centre is scheduled to be opened in time for the planned reinterment of King Richard’s remains at Leicester Cathedral, just across the road in Peacock Lane, in spring 2014.