Media Release - 28/07/11
A piece of Canterbury’s nursing history will be revealed when a time capsule, found during the demolition of Hagley Hostel in Christchurch, is opened.
Demolition contractors discovered the metal cylinder time capsule during the removal of the hostel’s foundation stone. Canterbury District Health Board staff handed it to Canterbury Museum experts to examine and tomorrow, Friday, July 29, its contents will be revealed.
Canterbury District Health Board (DHB) Site Redevelopment project manager Bruce Hellyer says it is an exciting find and hopefully the capsule will contain some interesting items.
“You just never know what could be inside it. It’s likely to be some old newspapers or even some other clue to Canterbury’s past.”
Ironically, earthquakes have flanked the hostel’s 80-year history.
The foundation stone was laid in 1931 – the same year of the Napier earthquake claimed 256 lives and was removed in 2011 – the year of New Zealand’s second most devastating earthquake where 182 people died.
Mr Hellyer says the Napier earthquake provided some lessons to the construction team building Hagley Hostel with some aspects of the design altered following the event.
The hostel’s demolition this year has been part of the Canterbury DHB wider redevelopment plans for Christchurch Hospital but has been sped up.
“The September 4, 2010 and February 22, 2011 earthquakes resulted in the building being badly damaged but demolition was always part of the future plan,” Mr Hellyer said.
Demolition is ahead of its original completion date of September.