FIFTEEN living relatives of King Richard III, whose body was unearthed from a council car park last year, have launched a bid to have him buried in the North.

Archaeologists from the University of Leicester were granted permission to excavate the car park in Leicester city centre and to decide where the bones should be reburied by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ).

Under the terms of the licence to dig up the remains, the university has decided Richard - killed at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485 - should be re-interred at Leicester Cathedral.

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Plans are being made for the re-interment in the cathedral next year along with designs for the kings tomb.

But campaigners have argued that the king himself would have wanted to be put to rest at York Minster and that the remains should be moved to the city.

The MoJ has said it is the University of Leicester's decision to make as they had been granted permission to exhume the monarch.

Now the Plantagenet Alliance, made up of 15 living relatives of the monarch, has announced it is to challenge the MoJ's decision to grant the licence to Leicester University.

An application for judicial review is to be lodged by lawyers on behalf of the group, who are seeking to have the remains reburied in York.

Experts from law firm Gordons, based in Leeds, say the relatives will argue that the Ministry of Justice failed to consult with them over the terms of the licence and that such failure constitutes a breach of Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (the right to respect for private and family life).

Matthew Howarth, the partner leading the Gordons team, said: "We have now written officially to the Ministry of Justice and University of Leicester, notifying them that we plan to issue these claims.

"We will follow up by issuing the judicial review and other proceedings as soon as possible, but certainly within the next few weeks."

Stephen Nicolay, a 16th great-nephew of the monarch and member of the Plantagenet Alliance, said: "We have every hope that (we) will succeed in ... our quest to have Richards remains buried at the most appropriate site, York Minster."

King Richard grew up at Middleham Castle in the Yorkshire Dales and visited York several times during his 26-month reign.