Hackney Town Hall Time Capsule put back to the future

Hackney’s past and present was sent into the future by local school children with the burying of two time capsules at Hackney Town Hall on Monday 3 July.

The event marked the 80th anniversary of the opening of Hackney Town Hall and included the burial of the original time capsule from 1937 alongside a new one to mark the completion of recent renovation work eight decades on.

A number of items were included in the time capsule such as seeds from the London Fields wildflower meadow, a copy of Hackney Today, a letter from Philip Glanville to the future Mayor of Hackney, as well as many letters and drawings from school children at Petchey Academy and Millfields Primary School, based on their everyday lives and thoughts about the future.

A delegation of children from Millfields Primary joined the Speaker of Hackney, Cllr Soraya Adejare and Mayor Philip Glanville to set the time capsules behind two foundation stones in the lobby of Hackney Town Hall on Mare Street. The children were also treated to a tour of the building which included a chance to sit in the Speaker’s chair in the Town Hall chamber. It is hoped the time capsule will be opened in 100 years’ time.

Eshall Husain, aged 8, said: “It was really fun, it was my pleasure to come here today. I think when someone important opens it in the future they can see what we wrote and it can help them to change the world and make it better.”

One of the entries came from Maariyah Mulla, 8, who included a collage of all the things she liked in Hackney including the fountain at Clapton Pond, the Geffrye Museum and Hackney Central Library.

Benjamin Smith, a year 7 pupil at Petchey Academy, included a futuristic vision of Hackney in a century’s time that included a street cleaning robot and holograms. Another of the futuristic drawings created by a pupil at Millfields included a Michelle Obama escalator to a park in the sky.

There were also letters from all of the children, with one student asking if the person who opened the time capsule could “pretty please, with a cherry on top” travel back in time to visit them if the technology was available. The letters also contained the children’s hopes for a future Hackney and lists of the things they like best in the borough today.


The Speaker of Hackney, Cllr Soraya Adejare
I was proud to be part of a ceremony that sent the hopes and dreams of our young residents into the future. It’s great to be able to share a bit of what our borough was like in 2017 with residents in 100 years’ time, while getting children of today to think about how the world can change in that time and how they can be the ones to help change it for the better.
The Speaker of Hackney, Cllr Soraya Adejare