There perhaps is not a more polarizing image in recent history, then that of Richard III. On the one hand he is the story of the evil, vicious monster, an insensitive ogre, a hunchback with a withered arm who ate live frogs for breakfast, who barely had enough family to satisfy his lust for murder, then, there is a different view.
The other view has him as a reformer. Extensive legal reforms whose effects we are feeling to this day. Richard III invented the system of bail-- he did not think it appropriate for offenders of small crimes to be detained of their liberty before trial.
Richard III legislated that the law of the land must be in the language of land. Prior to Richard, those unaware of either Latin or Old French did not know what the law was. It was a Ricardian measure that had the law translated and posted in public market places for all to see and read.
Richard III standardized the system of weights and measures. A yard of cloth did not necessarily measure the same from merchant to merchant. A pound of beef did not necessarily weigh the same. With standardization, consumers were assured of consistency.
Richard III abolished the system of benevolences. This was a system whereby members of the gentry could actually pay for high offices (for example, positions on the judiciary without necessarily having qualifications). It was Richard's belief that the best man should be presented with the job most suited to his talents regardless of birth.
Richard was clearly loved in the north, in his city of York. One of the greatest contradictions to start with is the resolution passed by the city of York after the death of Richard III (to the peril of the individual members) which was an enormous insult to Henry VII. (Remember, Henry VII actually backdated his reign before Bosworth, so that those who fought for Richard could be executed for treason.) In that climate for such a resolution to come from the city of York is rather remarkable. Richard 'was piteously slain and murdered, to the great heaviness of this City'.