On this day in 1865!


On this day in 1865, British teacher, nurse and World War One hero, Edith Louisa Cavell was born to the world.

So who was Edith Cavell?

At the time of her death at the age of 49, she was a nurse, tried and found guilty for treason and sentenced to death.

However, her early career began as a 15-year old studying at Norwich High School for girls, a boarding school which now falls under the prestigious Girls Day School Trust (GDST), renowned for exceeding national standards and teaching excellence, not to mention getting up to five times more girls into top universities, degrees and STEM careers than other independent schools. 

After working hard and completing her education, Edith went on to work as a governess for a family in Brussels between 1890 and 1895, teaching their four young children.  Unfortunately, she had to return home to care for her sick father.


In 1896, after nursing her father back to health, she did what teenagers across the UK do today – she undertook work experience at a hospital (Fountains Fever Hospital) to see whether nursing was the right profession for her. And what do you know… it sure was! Later that year she was accepted at the Royal London Hospital to begin her professional training, which led to her career as a nurse and becoming a notable pioneer of modern nursing in Belgium.

Today, she is celebrated for helping 200 or so soldiers escape from the German-occupied Belgium during the first world war, which ultimately led to her arrest and death.


After joining the war efforts in 1914, she encouraged nurses to help any soldier that came through their doors, regardless of which side they were fighting on and later that year, Edith made a decision that would change her life – she decided to help British, Belgian and French soldiers escape to Holland, a ‘neutral country’ where they would be safe.

Inscribed on her memorial, near Trefalgar Square, are the words she spoke on the night before her execution, "Patriotism is not enough. I must have no hatred or bitterness towards anyone."

Edith Louisa Cavells strong Anglican beliefs drove her to help all those who needed it and her famous words now  echo what is a global campaign for Human Rights.

As we approach the 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on 10th December, “a milestone document that proclaimed the inalienable rights which everyone is inherently entitled to as a human being -- regardless of race, colour, religion, sex, language, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status”  we should also remember Edith for her unknowing and early part in #StandUp4HumanRights

Read more about Edith Cavell at:  https://www.natgeokids.com/uk/discover/history/general-history/edith-cavell/

Discover 5 reasons to study at an all girls school: https://wordpress.com/post/guardianshipservices898177743.wordpress.com/32

Contact James-Lee Consultancy, a preferred GDST partner, to find out more about the Girls Day School Trust and Norwich High School For Girls.