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Fund for the Future Launched

Alan Titchmarsh along with others have backed a letter to The Times, published Wednesday 10th April 2024, launching the start of our ‘Fund for the Future’ Endowment fund.

The article was titled ‘Alan Titchmarsh leads plea to save father of ecology’s home’

In 1954 there was an appeal launched in The Times newspaper from conservationists, including the head of the RSPB and the Zoological Society of London. In their letter they asked for £24,500 to preserve the home of Gilbert White and its 27 acres of parkland.

“The museum is threatened by factors entirely beyond its control…as an independent museum, dependent on visitor income, with no public subsidy, its external costs are rising ­massively.” The letter dated Wednesday 10thApril was a deliberate echo of the 1954 original, and several of the ­signatories are descendants of those behind the first letter, including the Earl of Selborne.

“Like all museums we are experiencing a difficult time,” – Judith Bowles, co-director of the museum. More people than ever before are discovering the wonderful world of Gilbert White and the museum here in Selborne, but increasing costs is putting a considerable strain on our resources.

It is hoped that the appeal will raise enough for a £1 million endowment, which could provide protection to make ends meet during the quieter winter months and ensure long-term sustainability of the site. “It’s not a begging letter. We need to make sure the future is secure by having a sustainable endowment fund” – Judith Bowles.

This fund will ensure that we can continue our valuable work with thousands of school children each year to inspire journeys in the natural world and carry on Gilbert White’s legacy for many years to come. With a new GCSE on the way highlighting White as the ‘father of ecology’, now is the time to protect his legacy.

Donations can be made via our website: