Fact of the day: 25th May

On this day in 1846 Princess Helena of the United Kingdom was born.

Helena was the most active member of the royal family, carrying out an extensive programme of royal engagements at a time when royalty was not expected to appear often in public.

She was also an active patron of charities, and was one of the founding members of the Red Cross. She was founding president of the Royal School of Needlework, and president of the Royal British Nurses’ Association.

As president of the latter, she was a strong supporter of nurse registration against the advice of Florence Nightingale.

She became the first member of her family to celebrate her 50th wedding anniversary in 1916, but her husband died a year later.

Helena outlived him by six years, and died aged 77 at Schomberg House on 9 June 1923.

377px-Helena_scan

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