A SPECIAL ceremony was held today (Monday) to preserve parts of Malton life for future generations.

Schoolchildren helped bury a time capsule to mark the restoration of Malton’s Wesley Centre at the event which was also attended by members of the public and local dignitaries.

The Grade II* building of historic importance in Savile Street is to reopen next spring as a state-of-the-art community hub, featuring a 600-seat auditorium.

The time capsule project aimed to capture the essence of our present time by inviting school children to contribute letters, drawings, and objects that encapsulate their thoughts, dreams, and hopes for the future. The objects have now been sealed for 100 years, to be opened by the children of Malton in the future.

Paul Emberley, trustee, and Wesley Centre development lead, said: “Whilst working on the restoration of the Wesley Centre, the architects and builders found historic artefacts embedded in floorboards and walls, including a 1902 opera programme. This sparked an idea to engage with the local primary school children to take part in a time capsule project.”

The iconic Malton building was twice put up for sale in the last century and was at risk of permanent closure or demolition after suffering significant structural issues.

Paul, said: “It’s very special that local schoolchildren have explored what items and ideas encapsulate the times we live in for the time capsule, and what they want to pass on for the future. Just as with the Wesley Centre, it’s important to preserve what matters, while looking to the future.”

The new community hub will feature a new entrance lobby, new facilities for the disabled, a concert and events box office, and community café.

Paul said: “This sympathetic renovation will preserve what makes this historic building special, while making it of use for our community now, and for the future. It will be a vibrant centre for classical music, the arts, and for community recreational use, adding value to those who live and work in Malton, and bringing vital footfall to our market town.”

The Wesley Centre has provided a specially designed container ensuring the safe preservation of the contributed items which include a copy of the Malton Gazette & Herald.

Paul added: “This time capsule project was driven by a shared vision of preserving local history and fostering a sense of curiosity in future generations. Through their contributions, children have had the opportunity to leave a lasting imprint on the community, ensuring that their voices and perspectives are heard by those who will inhabit the world a century from now.”