Plan­ta­genet woes

The Church of England - - COMMENT -

Two in­ter­est­ing snip­pets of in­for­ma­tion ap­peared in the Easter is­sue of Coun­try Life. Hot cross buns are now a round-the-year favourite in su­per­mar­kets but the mag­a­zine re­vealed that their sale was banned by El­iz­a­beth I ex­cept on Good Fri­day, Christ­mas Day and at fu­ner­als. Tainted with poper y they didn’t bounce back in pop­u­lar­ity un­til the 18th Cen­tur y. In the same is­sue a reader’s let­ter high­lights an­other un­for­tu­nate con­se­quence of the Ref­or­ma­tion. The Plan­ta­genet fam­ily lived in Fotheringay Cas­tle and the nearby col­le­giate church which houses the re­mains of Richard III’s mother, fa­ther and el­der brother ur­gently needs re­pair. Be­fore the Ref­or­ma­tion Fotheringay was the most im­por­tant col­le­giate church in the countr y but the Tu­dors were not big fans. Only 105 peo­ple live in the vil­lage where the church is sit­u­ated and the Lot­ter y Fund has re­fused help. Per­haps Le­ices­ter Cathe­dral, prof­it­ing from an in­flux of tourists, could lend a hand. Pri­vate Eye refers to the ‘mirac­u­lous’ dis­cover y of royal re­mains close to a hith­erto un­known cathe­dral and sug­gests words for a hymn that could be sung by the choir and con­gre­ga­tion:

There is a gift shop, near at hand, Within th­ese holy walls. So get your hand upon your cash, For now the teashop calls.

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