School uncovers 25-year-old time capsule during play ground work

To mark the opening of its new sports and play facilities, a Sleaford area school has dug-up a 25-year-old time capsule to take a peek at its contents.

Ruskington Chestnut Street School children enjoying the new trim trail and multi-use games area. EMN-210728-164605001
Ruskington Chestnut Street School children enjoying the new trim trail and multi-use games area. EMN-210728-164605001

Ruskington Chestnut Street C of E Primary Academy took a step back in time to reveal the contents of the capsule buried in its grounds a quarter of a century ago and officially opened its new multi-use games Astro-Pitch and activity trail, much to the excitement of the children.

Now one of 18 schools in the Lincolnshire Anglican Academies Trust (LAAT), the school buried the original time capsule on July 11, 1996, when its tactile garden was officially opened.

With a trim trail and multi-use games area now added to its facilities the school staff decided to give children a glimpse into the past before the capsule is reburied beside a new one, filled with material from this year.

Reburying the time capsules at Ruskington Chestnut Street Academy. EMN-210728-164616001

The event took place on Monday, July 12, and was attended by Jackie Waters-Dewhurst, chief executive of LAAT, Chris Petz, who had been the headteacher at the time in 1996, and Terry Walton, former school caretaker who helped create the area. A third VIP was Tracy Dudden who now works in the after-school club – but was a pupil in 1996 and placed an item in the old capsule.

Jackie Waters-Dewhurst said: “Opening the new facilities is a significant event for Chestnut Street, and seeing both the old and new time capsules will help to underline the importance of the day – not only for the children, but for the wider community.”

Current executive headteacher George Trafford said: “Opening the time capsule is a unique opportunity for today’s children to learn about the time when many of their parents were at school. And now we are providing something for the children of today’s generation.

“Staff have guided children to consider what to select for placing in the new capsule. It’s a selection of the children’s own work including letters to the future, prayers, self-portraits, coins, stamps and Euro football stickers.”

The school’s new facilities also include a new teepee and mark-making hut in the Key Stage 1 area and new den-making posts and canopies in the Forest School area. A storybook chair will be added during the summer.

Current head of school Daniel Doud said: “Some of the new equipment was funded by a donation from the Friends of the School when that organisation closed earlier this year. The rest has come from the school’s capital projects budget.

“The new equipment will have a positive impact on our provision for the children. Development is ongoing, and we hope to develop an outdoor reading area and add new playground markings in the coming months.”

LAAT is a multi academy trust which was set up by the Diocese of Lincoln in 2013 to build a mutually-supportive family of academies in Greater Lincolnshire. It operates a number of academies under a single charitable company.