Online auction bid to boost Florence Nightingale Museum’s fight for survival

TV Bargain Hunt expert Charles Hanson to host the sale – find out how to join in online

A display at the Florence Nightingale Museum in London  Picture: Florence Nightingale Museum

A Florence Nightingale Barbie doll, children's nursing scrubs, special edition beer, and a book signed by Boris Johnson, are among items heading to auction in an attempt to save the Florence Nightingale Museum from permanent closure.

The museum has faced a castrosphic loss of revenue because of lockdown. The online sale at 6:15pm on Friday 19 June.

This should have been a bumper year for the museum

Museum director David Green said: 'The pandemic and associated lockdown has devastated what we expected to be a bumper year.'

Mr Green said 98% of the museum's income came from visitors, and every day of closure costs the organisation thousands of pounds. 

'Prolonged closure and decimated tourist markets threaten the future of the museum. We rely heavily on admissions and retail income to support our small charity, which receives no core funding from government or elsewhere.'

TV auctioneer Charles Hanson will conduct the sale from his garden shed

The story of Nightingale must be preserved

The online auction will be the BBC's Bargain Hunt and Antiques Road Trip antiques expert Charles Hanson, who will be bringing down the hammer in his Derbyshire garden shed.

Mr Hanson said he had been horrified to learn the musuem was at risk, calling Florence Nightingale an icon in British history. 

View the auction catalogue 

'Her story must be preserved, not least because it inspires children to take up nursing as a career.

'I very much hope the great British public will tune in to our bidding platform and help us make as much money as possible.'

Some of the auction lots

Picture: Florence Nightingale Museum

Join the sale live

Currently, there are 95 lots including:

  • Children’s nursing scrubs donated by England’s chief nursing officer Ruth May and signed by doctor and television personality Ranj Singh
  • A book signed by prime minister Boris Johnson
  • Ballet shoes donated by Tamara Rojo, artistic director and principal dancer of the English National Ballet
  • A Florence Nightingale Barbie doll, its final design prototype and a digital sketch of the doll in its final design stage, all donated by Mattel
  • 'Florence' beer brewed in honour of NHS staff

Dr Ranj Singh with items donated to the appeal

Donate to the museum appeal here


In other news

Register for free updates Register for free updates

We have made it easy for you to stay up to date with the latest developments in nursing, including relevant COVID-19 information.

Register with us for free – it takes less than a minute – and you'll receive news and updates straight to your inbox.

Register here today