A PAGE from Florence Nightingale's diary given to a woman from Chichester is being sold to raise money for the NHS.

Sue Brown, 76, was given the remarkable piece of history by her great aunt, Helen Josephine Chance, from Carlisle, while she was in hospital in 1980.

It was with great emotion that her aunt found the incredible page and asked Sue to keep it safe.

However, it was only recently that she truly realised the emotional value of what she had been given.

Sue said: “I was scuffling all through the lockdown and going through the family records.

“I nearly burst into tears and I thought ‘she gave me that with so much emotion in her voice’, that generation was not given to great emotion.

“I realised that it had actually meant something and going through my files I found it in the very important file so I realised it had meant something to her, and it also meant something to me.”

Sue's great aunt lived an incredible life helping people at home and abroad which is when Sue believes this diary page came into her hands.

She served as a Red Cross nurse in the first world war, initially in Colchester, but her work quickly took her across the world.

Sue commented: “She served at Colchester then onboard a hospital ship and then she served at the military hospital in Salonica in northern Greece.

“It’s not hardship to think that she then went on from northern Greece to Istanbul - or Scutari.

“She actually was a nurse at Scutari, not at the same time as Florence Nightingale, but maybe they were given that as a thank you when they left.”

Scutari Hospital was set up during the Crimean War in what was once the army barracks.

When Florence Nightingale arrived, she set about vastly improving the hospital conditions and the quality of care being given.

The double-sided diary entry contains details such as the number of soldiers that were wounded, sick, or dead each day.

Although there is no reason to doubt its validity, there are some discrepancies in the page.

It has been examined to determine whether the entry was written by Florence Nightingale herself.

Sue said: “On the other hand, some of the spelling like Crimea is actually spelt with a ‘k’ which we know that Florence Nightingale didn’t.”

The Chance family travelled to various parts of the world through its work which typically contributed to society.

Sue wants to follow in her family’s footsteps by giving something back to the country during coronavirus.

The money raised by selling the page will be donated to the NHS - or another charity supporting the country during the pandemic.

“I think it really ought to raise money for the NHS,” she said.

“Look at what they are doing for things.

“I just feel that everybody is working quite hard and I just feel rather at a loss as to how I can personally contribute.

“Being of advanced years I can’t really go work in a hospital or do anything that helps anybody.”