The Med­ical Foun­da­tion: immor­tal­i­ty auction

Exhibited by
John Baguley.
June 06, 2013
Medium of Communication
Broadcast and television, face to face, posters, radio
Target Audience
Single gift
Type of Charity
Human rights & civil liberties
Country of Origin
Date of first appearance
December, 2000

SOFII’s view

Once again it’s the simple ideas that seem to work best. This concept from the Medical Foundation is not just simple it seems hard to imagine it not being a success in the right hands. As durable, readily replicable fundraising ideas go, this is a great addition to SOFII.

Creator / originator

John Baguley.

Summary / objectives

To raise funds for the public phase of the Medical Foundation for the Care of Victims of Tortures capital appeal.


This event draws on the tradition of authors individually agreeing to name a character in their next book after a charity donor.

Special characteristics

Seven internationally known authors agreed to auction the name of a character in their next book: Hanif Kureisi ,Louis de Bernieres, Sebastian Foulks, Rose Tremain, Kathy Lette, Jim Crace and Nick Hornby.

The event was held at the BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) awards and several of the authors were present. It was filmed by both Canadian and Swedish television and achieved national publicity in the press and BBC radio in the UK.

Influence / impact

This auction captured the public imagination and in subsequent years has been replicated by several organisations, including the Free Tibet Campaign. The Medical Foundation itself has repeated this auction several times.


Approx £5000.


Approx £40,000.


A distinctive event that achieved international publicity and is successfully replicated by several organisations.

Other relevant information

This event continues to be a source of income for the Medical Foundation.