150,000 people have visited Richard III’s tomb in last six months
The Richard III visitor centre has announced that almost 150,000 people have been to visit the tomb of King Richard III since his remains were reinterred at Leicester Cathedral in March.
A large proportion of tourists visited the city in the week following the reinterment ceremony, with 23,000 coming to pay their respects.
Following that initial influx, a total of 124,500 people have been to visit the tomb – taking the total number of overall visitors to 147,500 in the six months between March and April.
The Richard III visitor centre has also welcomed almost 50,000 people during the same time frame.
The visitor centre’s directore, Iain Gordon, said:
The period since the reinterment has been incredibly busy for us and the Cathedral Quarter as a whole.
We went straight into the Easter holidays, followed by May half term and the school summer holidays and those are the periods when the centre has been at its busiest, as any visitor attraction or museum would expect.
However, since it opened last July, the visitor centre (which cost £4 million to build) fell short of it’s yearly target of 100,000 visitors – welcoming just 81,600 in its first year.
Iain Gordon explained that, although the centre got off to a great start when it opened, the momentum began to slow before the lead up to the reinterment. He said:
Immediately after the reinterment the cathedral saw huge volumes of visitors to the tomb who may have already visited the Centre since it opened in July last year.
During June, July and August, we have received roughly half the number of visitors the cathedral has and we hope to see this pattern continue.
With so many visitors to the cathedral and visitor centre, along with the variety of retailers, cafes and bars in the Lanes, there’s a really vibrant feel to the St Martins area as a whole.
Have you been to visit the tomb of King Richard III and/or the visitor centre? Let us know what you thought of it in the comments below…