As part of my job, I have to sometimes visit the hospital Bereavement Office. I was there a little while ago, filling out a form, when I noticed a beautiful, old, wooden box on the desk. Being curious, I asked who it belonged to and was told that it was the property of a deceased patient that had been unclaimed for a long time. The hospital policy is that an item has to be left for a certain amount of time (I think 3 years) to give family an opportunity to claim it but after that it gets sold or discarded.
Well, as I left the office, I said casually to one of the clerks that I really liked it and would be very interested in it if no-one claimed it. Lo and behold, I got a phone call later that same day from the office manager to say I could have it for a small donation! Apparently everyone in the office had been admiring it over the years but no-one had expressed an interest in it until I came along...
...And the best thing? The clerks suggested a donation of £10. A tenner!! What a bargain. That £10 will go into the charity trust fund of my department (Acute Medicine) to put towards equipment or training. I know it doesn't sound like a lot but every penny helps.
There are no markings or labels to suggest who it belonged to or when it was made. Inside there was a single, enamelled, lapel pin/badge with two hearts and a crown. I gather this was something given to blood donors once they'd donated a certain amount of blood to the Blood Transfusion Service, probably originating from the 1960s, but I can't be certain as there aren't any markings on it.
So, what have I done with it? It's the perfect size to store my threads!