A late writer, historian and businessman from Leeds has been honoured by a key international historical society.
Peter Algar, formerly of Horsforth, Leeds, has had a literary award dedicated in his name by The Richard III Foundation, Inc.
Peter, the author of the Yorkshire based The Shepherd Lord and Dead Man’s Hill books, was a patron of the Foundation and also served as a committee member on the John Davey Research Grant for Medieval Studies.
The Peter Algar Literary Award will be presented in October at the Foundation’s annual symposium on the 12th of October at the Dixie Grammar School in Market Bosworth.
The Foundation, an international non-for-profit organizes focuses on the life and times of King Richard III and the Fifteenth Century.
Its patrons include the actor Robert Hardy, historians Professor Anne Curry and Michael Miller and author Sharon K. Penman. The Foundation promotes research and scholarship among its many programs.
JoeAnn Ricca, Founder and CEO/President of the Foundation stated:
“Peter was an exceptional man - a tremendous supporter of our organisation, a close personal friend but above all a humanist who exuded warmth to all he knew and who garnered tremendous respect from many people in Leeds and Yorkshire.
“We established a Literary Award in 1998. Its purpose was to acknowledge a patron via the submission of articles to our publication, “The Medelai Gazette”. We look for those individuals who through their literary research raises the bar In our understanding of the Fifteenth Century.
“After Peter’s passing in June of last year, the Executive Board decided to change the name of the award to include Peter’s name in memory and honour of the work that Peter did not only in the Foundation, but to his general love of history especially as it pertained to Yorkshire history.
“Peter committed himself to pursuing a historical career - and those who knew him or read his blog or works, would remark that his historical knowledge, especially of Yorkshire, was absolutely second to none. It is a loss that we still feel and a void that will never be filled.
“His two novels, while fiction, are so strong and so close to the non-fiction element of history, that they draw the reader into making him or her forget that what they are reading is actual fiction.
“In October of this year, we will be presenting the inaugural award to the Algar family.
“We hope the award, in Peter’s name, will enshrine the values which he cherished and spur on future writers and historians to explore the ‘true’ history of the period or at the very least not to accept the ‘apparent’ truth of our handed down or prima facie history.
“At a time when King Richard III is very much in the news especially with the recent discovery of his remains, we are unable to think of a better literary ambassador for our increasingly significant and socially resonant cause.
We hope to see a reawakening of interest in medieval English history. History has been made in an astonishing way. It is the hope of the Foundation that a re-evaluation and renaissance of King Richard III’s good name and reputation will now take place. It is in many ways the return of the King. Lastly it is our hope his remains will be reinterred where he can rest in peace.
“On a personal note, I can’t think how enraptured Peter would be by the recent revelations. He always said Richard, as Governor of the North, was a champion of Yorkshire.
“It’s often said that history is told by the winners – our hope is that in Peter’s name, this ongoing memorial will help writers, historians and researchers take an intelligent and objective view to the remarkable history of the period, the politics of Britain and also perhaps cause us to pause to consider what history can still tell us today.”