Florence Nightingale clock to be auctioned for hospice

4th May 2020

A carriage clock presented as a gift by Florence Nightingale – the founder of modern nursing – is to be auctioned in aid of a Worcestershire hospice.

The 8 inch high clock was thought to have been given by the famous Victorian nurse to fellow social reformer Mathilde Schwabe.

The current owner of the clock, who has asked to remain anonymous, will donate all money raised from its sale to St Richard’s Hospice in Worcester who have described their delight at the “wonderful and uplifting gesture.”

The clock, inscribed with the words “M.E.S from Florence Nightingale 10 October 1887″, will be sold by Philip Serrell Auctioneers with bidding open now. The auctioneer’s estimate of £1-£2,000 has already been topped with the current bid standing at £4,200 and interest from across the globe.

St Richard’s Hospice Fundraising Director, Tricia Cavell said, “This is such a wonderful and uplifting gesture from a supporter during these difficult times. We truly appreciate the donation of the auction sale proceeds from this historic and beautiful clock. It’s particularly poignant that the clock came from the founder of modern nursing, Florence Nightingale, and any funds raised will help our nursing teams to care for patients and their families facing such challenging times during the COVID-19 crisis.”

“We have fantastic supporters and are hopeful that together with help from government and the community, we can come through these financially testing times.” 

Philip Serrell said the current owner of the clock inherited it from a cousin who was great-niece of Miss SchwabeThe owner believes Miss Schwabe received the clock from Florence Nightingale in recognition of work or help she had provided.

Philip Serrell is a Patron of St Richard’s Hospice and will be waiving auction fees and buyers premium. Auction Technology Group who are hosting the sale have also agreed to waive their charges. The timed auction will close at 12 noon on Friday 22nd MayFind out more at

St Richard’s Hospice cares for adults with a serious progressive illness, improving their quality of life from diagnosis, during treatment and to their last days. It also supports their loved ones. 

Each year the hospice team supports more than 3,400 patients, family members and bereaved people in Worcestershire.

St Richard’s is an independent charity and relies on donations and gifts in Wills for the majority of its income with 22% funded by the NHS.

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

During this challenging time, we are doing our utmost to continue caring for the patients and loved ones who need us most.

The way we work has been adapted, with many of our services delivered remotely – such as over the phone, or by video call. And we are working closely with other health care professionals in Worcestershire to share knowledge and expertise at this time.

Latest changes at St Richard’s Hospice

  • In-patient Unit: It is with great sadness that due to stringent infection control measures, we are required to restrict visiting and cannot offer the comprehensive level of service in the way we usually do. However, we will still do our utmost to make sure that each patient and loved one is given the compassion and dignity they deserve. To help families stay in touch we are encouraging virtual visiting using technology such as video calls and apps. This will be discussed and explained to patients and families on admission and we can help provide access to equipment in the hospice. In addition, the IPU nursing team will liaise with each patient and family to arrange short daily visits from the patient's closest loved one and compassionate visiting, as appropriate. Read the full details here.
  • Community Nursing: Community services continue to operate, with a mixture of hands-on care and remote support.
  • Living Well and Family Support Services: Switched to virtual model, with care given remotely over the phone or via video call.
  • Shops: All 19 of our shops and warehouse are temporarily closed. Please do not leave donations outside our shops, as we are unable to collect them at this time.
  • Fundraising: All hospice organised events until the end of August have been postponed. If you wish to support us, please donate to our Resilience Fund.

Please do not visit St Richard’s Hospice if you have a high temperature or new, continuous cough. If you have these symptoms, please stay at home and self-isolate for seven days. See NHS advice on coronavirus.

Thank you for your support and understanding at this difficult time.