Mary Seacole – KQ6 – Why doesn’t everyone agree that Mary deserves her statue at St. Thomas’ hospital?

This lesson places pupils in the role of Mantle of the Expert. A new monument to Mary Seacole was erected outside St Thomas Hospital in 2016 . But there have been complaints. Surely it was Florence who was associated with St Thomas’ hospital , not Mary. Doesn’t Florence deserve a statue more? So, should the statue be replaced? The pupils are drafted in as historical advisers to help the planners decide. Perhaps the pupils will opt for both women being commemorated, side by side?

Learning objectives

  • Pupils can give 3 reasons why Mary Seacole deserves a statue in a prominent place after all this time.
  • They can give 3 reasons why Florence deserves recognition of this kind in a hospital so closely associated with her.
  • They can think of at least one reason why it might be thought unfair to put Mary’s statue on the site of StThomas’ hospital rather than somewhere else equally prominent.
  • They appreciate that even nowadays not everyone has the same high opinion of Mary and are aware that her real contribution has been overlooked for 200 years
  • Pupils can offer at least one reason why Mary’s achievements have not been as well recognised as Florence’s
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