'To the people of 2072' - Pupils' Covid memories buried in time capsule

Students at Ipswich High School

Students at Ipswich High School have buried a time capsule filled with items and letters telling future generations about the impact Covid-19 has had on them - Credit: Serena Jones

Letters dating to a future generation of young people 50 years in the future will share the exploits of secondary school students and the impact of Covid. 

Around 30 Ipswich High School students have contributed to the now buried time capsule, which contains artefacts and commemorative pieces to help educate future generations about the impact and reality the pandemic had on young people in education, and their lives.

The time capsule, buried on the grounds of Woolverstone Hall, was carefully packed full of memories from the last two years, and included poems and artwork created by students lower down in the school, as well as face masks and a Covid test.

Letters were also included, with one highlighting bizarre facts that people in 2072 could not imagine such as hugging being illegal, not being allowed to leave your home, and having to stand two metres apart from other people.

The letter co-head girl Lily Blackwell put into the capsule.

The letter co-head girl Lily Blackwell put into the capsule. - Credit: Lily Blackwell

Other items in the capsule include:

  • Segments from the schools newsletter, 'SNAPSHOT', to highlight what the school went through
  • Photos of the school
  • Photos of events such as summer balls and productions
The time capsule will be buried for 50 years

The time capsule will be buried for 50 years - Credit: Lily Blackwell

The capsule will stay buried at the grounds for 50 years, and will be dug up in 2072 when many of the students are in their late 60s.

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The project was spearheaded by head girls Lara Reeve and Lily Blackwell. 

Lara Reeve, 17, said: "We wanted to get an insight into how the pupils spent their lockdown period and what they found the most meaningful to them throughout.

"For me, music was incredibly important, so I wrote a letter to put in the capsule explaining how every Thursday, I would play a violin piece during the Clap for Heroes to lift morale in my local community. Others found art or sport most meaningful and many started new hobbies such as baking.

"Lily and I asked students to provide pieces of art, letters to the future, poems and pictures which could be put in the time capsule as a way to commemorate the period.

Lara Reeve (Left) and Lily Blackwell (Right) Spear headed the project

Lara Reeve (Left) and Lily Blackwell (Right) Spear headed the project - Credit: Lily Blackwell

"We also put in a Covid test and mask so that in 50 years we have evidence of how we had to adapt to living.

"We had a large number of submissions and it has been such an exciting project to lead as heads of school. It has rallied the school community together and given us a chance to reflect on what the last two years have bought for us all."

Lara, a student of music, history, economics and classics, said that the capsule also included some statistics from the school during the lockdown period.

"We learnt some really interesting statistics about the school community too in the 'lockdown achievements' that the school collected. We ran 311km in the virtual sports day and that 710 music lessons were conducted online.

"We chose the location for planting near the cricket pavilion, as this is in the process of being refurbished and it will be in a place where people will be able to observe the plaque, reminding them that these memories are stored just under their feet."

Artwork created that went into the capsule

Artwork created that went into the capsule - Credit: Lily Blackwell

Drama, art and psychology student Lily Blackwell, 17, co-head girl, added: "We wanted to make something positive out of something so negative.

"I know a lot of people had a lot to say and what better way to tell people of the future. There was a real sense of achievement what a group of us got together to plant it, almost as though Covid had bought us all together.

"We wanted a voice to be heard by our students about their personal experiences I think it was such a special thing to be involved in.

"Covid has been such a huge part of our lives, it has affected all of us greatly and it has changed the world forever.

"We had such great support from the school throughout lockdowns and we needed that to be shown too.

"It has been brilliant organising a project as big as this, which will eventually become part of Ipswich High School’s long history."

A poem that went in the capsule written by students Abigail Finbow.

A poem that went in the capsule written by students Abigail Finbow. - Credit: Lily Blackwell