24 June 2020
The future of the Florence Nightingale Museum is still precarious, despite an online auction last Friday which raised more than £18,000 ($A32,480) for the ailing London attraction.
British auctioneer Charles Hanson announced the sale last month after hearing the museum needed £160,000 ($A288,700) to stay open.
The charity-run museum had expected a surge in visitors and activities given 2020 was the bicentenary of Nightingale’s birth and the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife. However, the coronavirus onslaught forced the museum, like many other businesses and institutions, to close its doors to the public … effectively severing its primary source of revenue.
Lots that were sold from Mr Hanson's auction rooms included a weekend stay at Nightingale's family home in Derbyshire for £820 ($A1480), and a guide to 10 Downing Street signed by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson for £490 ($A884). In total, £18,125 ($32,705) was raised on Friday, organisers said.
"The museum is battling for survival at the moment and [the] auction has really helped to raise awareness of our campaign, as well as significant funds,’’ director David Green was quoted by the BBC.
In May it was revealed the museum only had four months of operating costs left.
Mr Green said the museum had "invested in an exhibition and events to mark Nightingale's bicentenary", but that "backfired dramatically"