14th May 2021 Blog

St. George’s Hall celebrates International Nurses Day with a statue of Mary Seacole

St George’s Hall has announced the erection of a new statue this week. In celebration of National Nurses Day and in response to the Black Lives Matter movement, St George’s Hall is commissioning a statue of the inspirational Scottish-Jamaican nursing pioneer, Mary Seacole (1805-81). 

As a Grade I listed heritage site, St George’s Hall serves as a key educational resource through which people of all generations and from every corner of the world learn about British history. Yet, like many Victorian buildings, its statues pay homage to only the lives of white people – and, until recently, only those of men.

The Trust is determined to rectify this by commissioning a new statue to mark the life and achievements of Mary, who had an unshakeable belief in the power of nursing to make a difference. In 1853, she travelled to the Crimean War after the British government rejected her offer of help and nursed thousands of sick and injured soldiers – many of whom came from Liverpool.

She was a contemporary of Florence Nightingale, who invested her resources and risked her life to save others. At the time, Mary’s work was celebrated in the British press and by British soldiers, who called her Mother Seacole. Yet, over time, her achievements became overlooked in favour of her white contemporaries. It was only in 2004, when she was voted ‘Greatest Black Briton’ in a BBC survey that her legacy rose back to prominence.

Our very own Jayne Moore has served as a Board Member for St George’s Hall for five years now and says;

“St George’s Hall is an iconic Liverpool landmark and holds a special place in my heart. I’m delighted to see the increased equality balance between gender and ethnicity celebrated in this historic building. I definitely welcome statues that are more representative, to stand amongst the great men who built our city.”

You can view more information about the campaign here, and the St George’s Hall Charitable Trust welcomes donations to support them on their mission.

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