Why join the Richard III Society?
By becoming a Member you are given the chance to join a leading medieval historical society which concentrates on one of the most turbulent periods of British medieval history, the eventful life and times of Richard III, the last Plantagenet King, as well as the Wars of the Roses which occupied much of the second half of the century and the politics and culture of that period. The Society is a proactive one with many members undertaking research into the factors and events which shaped the fifteenth century. It also gives members a chance to participate in society activities as much or as little as they wish.
Annual Membership Benefits Include:
- Four issues of the Ricardian Bulletin, the Society's lively and informative members' magazine published in March, June, September, and December. Every issue includes topical news and features about the work of the Society and other items of interest which have relevance to Richard III and his times, including media coverage. There are also historical articles focusing on the late fifteenth century; exploring new subjects or re-examining old ones and always based on new research or fresh interpretations. Every issue carries at least one article relating specifically to Richard III.
- One issue of The Ricardian, the Society's historical journal. The journal publishes original articles on Ricardian and associated topics together with book reviews of recent historical publications. Material is contributed by both members and non-members.
- Access to the Society's Library with loans of books, papers, audio and video tapes, (overseas members - tapes and papers only). The Barton Library, named after Dr Saxon Barton, the Society's founder, is a comprehensive collection of books and papers about Richard III and his times, including a drama section, works of reference, recent and past articles, and fiction.
- Opportunities to join and participate in the activities of as many local Branches and Groups as desired, of which there are over twenty in the UK. There are also Branches in America, Australia, Canada and New Zealand as well as a Continental Group. Activities usually combine a programme of meetings and talks and, in the UK, visits to Ricardian sites.
- Opportunities to join UK and Overseas group visits to places associated with Richard III. There are seven-day visits to the Continent, a UK summer visit of up to four days, as well as day outings. The organisers thoroughly research all the sites to maximise the participants' enjoyment of these visits.
- Opportunities to attend two regular annual events; in August, a visit to Bosworth to mark the anniversary of the battle; and in December, a visit to Fotheringhay, Richard's birthplace, for a Christmas lunch and carol service.
- Opportunities to attend study weekends. The weekends are for small groups and are designed to introduce members to aspects of the late medieval period.
- Opportunities to attend the Society's triennial conferences. The conferences are usually held at UK universities and leading academics in the field of medieval history are invited to present papers. Past conferences have covered such themes as The Battle of Bosworth (University of Loughborough) and The Mystery of the Princes (Royal Agricultural College, Cirencester).
- Opportunity to attend the AGM held in early October in London, and every third year in another UK city. This is the main venue for members to meet each other and network. In addition to the formal proceedings other attractions include a guest speaker, craft and book stalls.
- Opportunity to buy books published by The Richard III and Yorkist History Trust at reduced rates. The Society established this separate charitable trust to publish important academic works, as well as to make research grants, mainly to post-graduate students studying the Yorkist period. Publications have included The Crowland Chronicle, an important contemporary source for the reign of Richard III; and Richard III: Loyalty, Lordship and Law, a series of papers originally given to a conference organised by the Society.
- In addition to the Trust's books, other publications and Ricardian items are available for purchase at advantageous prices.
- Access to the expertise of specialist members of the Society. Guidelines are available for those who wish to begin their own research and the Society has run a successful correspondence course in palaeography for many years. There are opportunities to participate in the Society's research projects.
Download the Society Membership Brochure.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What do I get when I join the Society?
On becoming a member you will be sent 'A New Member's Information Pack'. The pack includes welcome letters from the Chairman, Membership Officer, Librarian Co-ordinator, and relevant Branch or Group if you live within their catchment area.
The Bulletins and The Ricardian for the current membership year, unless you are a late joiner (see what if I join just before the end of the membership year? below). The Bulletin is the Society's quarterly news magazine and The Ricardian is the Society's annual journal.
A membership card, standing order form, Society brochure, our shop catalogue, and details of back copies of The Ricardian and Bulletin that are available for purchase.
- When do I get my information pack?
You should receive your pack within 21 days from receipt of your application.
- Do I have a membership number?
Yes you do, and it is shown on your membership card. It should be quoted on all correspondence with the membership and sales departments. It is also included on the address sheet that accompanies your mailings of the Society publications.
- Are there any rules or regulations?
The Society's Constitution is available online.
- What if I have a query about my membership?
For general joining queries please contact the Membership Liaison representative, Richard van Allen, by telephone (0208 402 8149) or via e-mail. For queries relating to a submitted application to join the Society please contact RIII Membership department by letter or e-mail here. Our contact details are also listed on the inside back cover of each Ricardian Bulletin.
- What if I don't receive my regular Bulletin or The Ricardian?
Contact the membership department quoting your membership number.
- When does the membership year run from?
The membership year commences on 2 October (the birthday of King Richard III).
- What if I join just before the end of the membership year?
If you join the Society on or after 1 August but before 2 October, you will have free membership for the period up to 2 October that year and receive the June and September Bulletins. Your membership will automatically be renewed on 2 October of the year you join and your next subscription payment will fall due on 2 October the following year.
- How can I renew my membership?
Complete the renewal form which is in the centrefold section of the September Bulletin and send it to the membership department together with your cheque, postal order or debit/credit card details (Visa or MasterCard only).
Alternatively you can complete a standing order form any time and forward it to your bank. A standing order form can be obtained from the membership department but it is also included in the 'Information Pack'
There is also a membership table at the AGM where payment of subscriptions can be made including cash.
NB: Please do not attempt to renew your subscription by sending your debit/credit card details by e-mail to the membership department as this could be intercepted by a third party with fraudulent intention.
- What if I forget to renew my subscription?
If you have not paid your subscription by 31 December you will be deemed a lapsed member and will no longer receive any of the Society's publications. A letter, however, is sent to such members in January to remind them of this situation. When the subscription has been paid then the dispatch of the publications will recommence.
NB: To send out reminder letters is a financial burden on the Society and we do ask members either to renew promptly or to notify us if they wish to resign from the Society.
- What happens if the subscription rates change?
Membership rates run from October to September each year. The matter is discussed during the summer by the Executive Committee and if an increase is felt to be appropriate, it is put before the membership at the AGM in October. If the vote is positive, the new rates take effect immediately for new members but are not applicable to existing members until the following October. For the year commencing October 2012, no increase was proposed.
If you pay by standing order you will need to advise your bank of the new subscription rate by phone, letter or on-line or complete a new standing order and cancel the old instruction.
- What if I move or my circumstances change?
In both instances write, telephone or e-mail to the membership department. If you need to change your membership category this will be effective from the new subscription year.
NB: If you do change your membership category and pay your subscription by standing order, please remember to inform your bank of your new subscription rate by phone, letter or on-line or complete a new standing order form and cancel the old instruction.
- What if I would like to buy a gift membership for a family member or friend?
No problem, just complete the application form with as much detail as possible and send to the membership department with the appropriate subscription payment. Please ensure that you state it is a gift membership and give your name so that we can complete the gift card, and allow 21 days for processing.
- What if I have a complaint?
The Society endeavours to provide an efficient and friendly service. If, however, you do have a problem please contact the relevant officer or write to the Chairman (contact details are on the inside back cover of the Bulletin).
- What if I want to resign?
The Society hopes this situation does not arise! The Society understands, however, that interests or financial circumstances may change. It would be appreciated if those who do not wish to renew their membership, or decide to leave the Society during the year, advise the membership department. It is also useful if you tell us why you have taken that decision, as this will help us monitor what members expect of the Society.
Current membership rates are:
|Type of Membership
|Family membership (all living at the same address)
|Senior citizen membership (over the age of 60)
|Senior citizen family membership (all over the age of 60 and living at the same address)
|Junior membership (joining before 18th birthday)
|Student membership (over 18 and in full-time education)
|Overseas mailing charge (to non-UK addresses including Eire)
- If you're paying for membership via PAYPAL, please use the 'PAYPAL' column cost.
- If you're paying for membership with a non-sterling cheque, please add a £15 exchange rate surcharge to cover our bank clearing charges.
How to Become a Member
Download an application form and then complete and save the completed form to your documents folder on your computer. Please complete as much of the form as possible but particularly the contact details.
Either post your completed application form with the appropriate subscription to:
The Quadrangle Centre
or attach your completed form to an email and send to RIII Membership.
If the Society needs to get in touch with you, it is much easier and quicker if we have an e-mail address or telephone number. The personal information you disclose to the Society will not be passed on to any third party for their own purposes. Your details however will be held on an electronic database.
Please allow 21 days for processing.
Cheques should be made payable to the Richard III Society and forwarded to the above address. Non-UK applicants paying by non-sterling cheques, or a cheque not drawn on a UK bank, should add the equivalent of £15.00 to cover exchange charges.
Made payable to 'The Richard III Society'.
We can accept credit card payments but details should not be sent to the Society online as we do not have a secure server and the security of your card details could be compromised. If you wish to pay by credit card please complete the application form and send it by post to the above address.
NB: Do not send details of your credit or debit card by email as this could compromise the security of your card.
Payments online can currently only be processed through PayPal.
- Log on to your PayPal account
- Select 'Send Money'
- Select 'Payment for Services'
- Enter email@example.com (the Society's e-mail address). [Please note there is no 'h' in firstname.lastname@example.org. If an 'h' is inserted the payment will not be accepted by PayPal.]
- Enter the amount to be paid and specify GBP
N.B. There is a 5% surcharge payable on PayPal transactions. The surcharge should be added to your subscription rate and any overseas postal supplement.
- Please complete the 'Message to Recipient' box and enter New Membership and your name. This is very important as it is the only way we can recognise the transaction and reference it with your application form.
Online transfer from your bank:
If you wish to transfer funds direct from your bank account to the Society's account please contact RIII Membership who will supply you with the bank's sort code and account number, and for overseas members, our IBAN/Swift codes.
Standing order forms are available from the membership department and should be completed and forwarded to your bank direct. Subscriptions are deducted on the 2nd October each year. When subscriptions are increased it is necessary for members to let their banks know the new subscription rate. With some banks, such as the Society's own bank, HSBC, this can be done by telephone or online to the bank. Alternatively new forms can be obtained from the membership department. However, if a new form is completed please ensure your bank cancel the old instruction.