On 22 August 1485 on a battlefield in Bosworth, Leicestershire, King Richard III, the last of the Plantagenet kings, was dealt a death blow by the man who had sworn loyalty to him only a few months earlier. That man was Rhys ap Thomas, a Welsh lord, master of Carew Castle in Pembrokeshire. For his service that day he was knighted on the field of battle by Henry Tudor. Rhys ap Thomas's life had been inextricably linked with both Richard and Henry; all three young men grew under the shadow of the Wars of the Roses, suffering losses and betrayals. Ironically on his death Rhys chose to spend his final days at the Grey Friars in Carmarthen, being buried by the monks as Richard had been almost forty years before, perhaps in an act of remorse. This is the story of the man who helped forge the course of British history.
Dr Susan Fern has lectured in history at Lampeter University and is currently research affiliate at the Open University. Her other books include The Jews Against Rome: War in Palestine AD 66-73 and The Emperors' Needles: Obelisks in Rome. She is a member of the Richard III Society and took part in the 1984 archaeological dig on the friary in Carmarthen where Rhys ap Thomas is buried. She lives in Winslow in Buckinghamshire.