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After St Mary Platt Primary lost its time capsule, an American university offers a lifeline to schools in the future


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Help is at hand for schools, colleges, individuals or businesses in Kent planning on burying a time-capsule.

The idea of squirrelling away a selection of today's artefacts for future generations to dig up in years to come is an attractive one, but even squirrels sometimes forget where they have hidden their nuts.

It's no good burying a time capsule if in 50 years no-one can remember where it is
It's no good burying a time capsule if in 50 years no-one can remember where it is

When St Mary's Platt Primary School moved location in September last year, it was aware that it left behind somewhere on its old site a time capsule buried in November 1996 to mark the school's 150th anniversary. But no-one could find it.

The school archivist Scott Wishart was reduced to digging trial holes across the site in the hope that he might hit on the right spot, but he had no success before the developers moved in.

The story of that sad loss, reported on KentOnline, was noticed by the International Time Capsule Society (ITCS).

Based at Oglethorpe University in Atlanta in the USA, the ITCS operates a free library service, recording the many thousands of time capsules buried all over the world.

A spokesman said: "We believe the knowledge gained in registering these time capsules offers us a wealth of information on the way we remember collectively."

A trench dug searching for the the Platt time capsule
A trench dug searching for the the Platt time capsule

He said: "Unfortunately, most time capsules are lost or forgotten over time, and as a result our stories and history are lost with them.

"In an effort to prevent this, the ITCS catalogue, map and preserve this information."

Since 1990, they have been recording the locations of any time capsule notified to them.

Had the St Mary Platt capsule been registered, its location could have been checked today.

Mr Wishart said: "That sound like a great idea!"

Scott Wishart: Sound like a good idea
Scott Wishart: Sound like a good idea

He said: "I’ve heard on the grapevine that Platt School may be thinking of burying a 2022 time capsule at the new school site. This time we must make sure we record where it is!"

The International Time Capsule Society has its own Facebook page here.

Or queries can be emailed to mark@itcsoc.org

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