Global donations allow museum to buy back writer’s ring from singer.
A ring once owned by the writer Jane Austen and bought by US pop star Kelly Clarkson at auction is set to remain in the UK following a campaign to keep it on British soil.
The turquoise and gold ring was purchased by Clarkson for more than £150,000 last year, outbidding the Jane Austen’s House Museum in Hampshire, which hoped to display it.
Culture minister Ed Vaizey had put the ring on an export ban until September 30, meaning it could not leave the UK. Calling for donations to help buy the ring back from Clarkson, the campaign proved fruitful after an anonymous benefactor donated £100,000 to the cause. Enough money has now been raised and an offer has been accepted to enable the museum to have ownership of the ring.
Mary Guyatt, curator of the Jane Austen’s House Museum, said staff had been stunned by the generosity of those who had supported the bid.
According to the BBC, upon hearing the museum had been successful in raising funds to purchase the ring, Ms Clarkson said: "The ring is a beautiful national treasure and I am happy to know that so many Jane Austen fans will get to see it at Jane Austen’s House Museum."
The museum said it hoped to welcome Ms Clarkson in the future.