Alderman Robert Finch, Lord Mayor of the City of London, today reminded people living and working in the City of London in 500 years time of life in the City of London today, when he placed a time capsule in stone C45 just above the western plinth of Temple Bar in Paternoster Square. With the quality of the reconstruction, using traditional lime mortar, it is conservatively estimated that there is no reason why Temple Bar should need to be deconstructed – and the time capsule discovered – for over 500 years, if not for considerably longer.
The stainless steel Time Capsule contains a factual snapshot of the City of London in 2004, together with notes, black and white photographs and news cuttings explaining the move back to Paternoster Square. The Lord Mayor chose to enclose an Egyptian sixpence in the capsule which was presented to the Lord Mayor by President Mubarak in Cairo in February 2004, as “a means of leaving our friendship uncut”. The President had earlier been presented with a silver paper knife by the Lord Mayor.
The capsule was professionally sealed after sealing individual contents to enhance their chance of survival and after ensuring no acidic materials were included. A full list of contents is shown below.
The time capsule was placed in the neatly chiselled circular hole in the same stone from which a Victorian time capsule was recovered just 5 weeks ago in Theobalds Park and which dated back to 1889. The placing of the capsule was witnessed by Gary Collings, Site Manager of Cathedral Works, the team on site and filmed by John Harris of Harris Digital Productions.
It is planned that Temple Bar will be reconstructed for a formal opening by November 2004.