Face of a king discovered

Image of updated facial reconstruction of Richard III

Professor Caroline Wilkinson, Director of LJMU’s Face Lab and the University’s School of Art and Design, who created a reconstruction of Richard III’s head, has updated the model after the release of new evidence.

In February 2013 the king's skeleton was found under a car park in Leicester during an archaeological dig. Experts from the University of Leicester said DNA tests confirmed that, beyond reasonable doubt, the bones matched that of descendants of the monarch's family. Further DNA testing, recently carried out by the university, has discovered that the king was likely to have different hair and eye colour to that depicted in the original model, created by Professor Wilkinson. Originally the king was thought to have dark hair and black eyes, but the new tests reveal he most likely had mousey-brown hair and blue eyes. 

Image of previous reconstruction of Richard III faceProfessor Wilkinson attended the King Richard III Visitor Centre in Leicester to make the necessary changes to the reconstruction, taking more than four hours to complete the transformation.

She commented: 

"It was a delicate task to remove the eyes and replace with lighter ones, as they are made of glass. The hair colour has also been updated, including eyebrows and eyelashes."

Iain Gordon, Director of the Visitor Centre, where the public can now see the revised model on display, said: 

"It was fascinating to watch Caroline at work and we were really pleased that we were able to complete the work and put the head back on display in time for the reinterment [of the king’s remains]."

News of Professor Wilkinson’s updated reconstruction of Richard III was covered by Culture 24, Royal Central and the Leicester Mercury.

Image of Caroline Wilkinson with John Snow on Channel 4 programme



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