Assembly on Florence Nightingale and Edith Cavell
Cast: of 30, easily adapted up or down
Duration: Around 15 minutes
This assembly takes a look at the lives of two remarkable women - Florence Nightingale and Edith Cavell - stories of outstanding courage in the face of overwhelming adversity.
Assembly on Florence Nightingale
Assembly on Florence Nightingale, Mary Seacole and Edith Cavell
Assembly on Mary Seacole and Edith Cavell
This script is one of the Famous People Series based on the lives of significant individuals in the past who have contributed to national and international achievements, comparing aspects of life in different periods. This list of ‘greats’ includes:
· Queens - Elizabeth I and Victoria (now available)
· Explorers - Christopher Columbus and Neil Armstrong
· Inventors - William Caxton and Tim Berners-Lee
· Painters - Pieter Bruegel the Elder and LS Lowry
· Women In Civil Rights - Rosa Parks and Emily Davison
Journalist: Wait a minute! Wait a minute! First things first! Who were these people? If they’re famous, I need to get the first scoop!
Narrator: (Irritably) First scoop? What do you mean?
Journalist: (Sighing) OK. Let’s put this simply. I’m in the business of getting a good story – for my newspaper! That’s what I get paid to do! So if you’ve got any celebs here today, I want to meet them!
(Enter Florence Nightingale)
Journalist: Aha! And you are?
Florence: Florence Nightingale – alias Lady of the Lamp!
(Journalist scribbles notes onto notepad, in between taking photos)
(Journalist looks up from notes, and then looks all around)
Journalist: And the other celeb? You did say ‘women’ I seem to remember?
(Enter Edith Cavell)
Edith: That would be me, Edith Cavell. I helped soldiers in the First World War.
(Journalist continues to scribble down every piece of information he’s given)
Journalist: (Turning to Florence) OK. And what did you do?
Florence: I nursed soldiers in the Crimean War.
Journalist: (Glaring at Narrator) Now wait a minute! I thought you said we had a couple of celebs here today! Since when did just nurses qualify as celebs?
Narrator: (Impatiently) But they weren’t just nurses as you so charmingly put it!
Journalist: So what were they, then? Hey! I need a bit more than this to make front page news!
Narrator: Well, Edith Cavell was perhaps the most famous British female casualty of the First World War!
Journalist: (Scribbling) Whoa! Now you’re talking!
Narrator: And Florence Nightingale – well, who hasn’t heard about her work both in the Crimea and at home?
Journalist: Hmm. A bit more detail?
Narrator: OK. So she transformed the nursing profession in England, as did Edith in Belgium.
Journalist: Wait a minute! Are you saying Miss Cavell wasn’t English?
Edith: No, no. I was born in Norfolk!
Florence: Whereas I was born in Florence, Italy! But my parents returned to England shortly afterwards.
Journalist: So …. (looking at watch). Sorry ladies. I have to hurry you a bit
(To Edith) Back to you Madam. A ‘casualty’, eh? How come?
Edith: Oh, I died at the age of 49, serving my country.
Journalist: (Apologetically) I hate to ask the obvious question, Madam, and I appreciate it’s rather a sensitive subject, but …. How?
Edith: By a German firing squad. I was executed.
Journalist: (Gasping) Oh my! You? A woman? A nurse? How could that happen?
Edith: That was exactly what the rest of the world asked!
Journalist: (To Florence) And you? Did you sacrifice your life too?
Florence: Well, not in that sense. I lived on to be 90 years old but I dedicated the rest of my life to looking after others.
Narrator: Yes. The first woman ever to be awarded the Order of Merit
(To Journalist) Now. Is that enough for you?
Journalist: (Closing notebook) Absolutely!
(To Edith and Florence) Sorry to have to rush off but I have a story to write - well, two! Thank you so much!