The skull of Richard III is seen in this photograph provided by the University of Leicester.

London - The living descendants of King Richard III have joined the campaign to demand that his remains are reburied in York.

The monarch’s 500-year-old skeleton was identified this month after it was found by an archaeological dig at a council car park in Leicester last year.

Richard III grew up in the Yorkshire Dales and visited York several times in his 26-month reign. A petition calling for him to be re-interred there has more than 23,000 signatures.

Despite this, his remains are due to be re-interred at Leicester Cathedral next year.

In a statement, nine of Richard III’s descendants – including his 17th great-nephews and nieces and 16th great-nieces and nephews – said: “King Richard III was the last King of the House of York. We do hereby most respectfully demand that the remains of King Richard III, our mutual ancestor, be returned to the city of York.

“We believe that such an interment was [his] desire in life.”

The Ministry of Justice has said the site was the University of Leicester’s decision because it had been granted permission to exhume the body. - Daily Mail