Woodcock Street time capsule set for burial

By on 25/03/2010 in News

Local school children are set to be involved in a special event which will help to shape the future of Birmingham when they bury a special time capsule at the site of a new council office block in Woodcock Street, Aston, on March 30. 

This is an important and exciting event for the children - the future talent of Birmingham - as it helps them to understand more about topics such as the working environment, construction, technology and sustainability.

The schools involved are Cherry Orchard Primary, William Cowper Primary, St Vincent's Primary, Cromwell Junior, St Joseph's Primary (Nechells).

Over the last month children from each of the schools have been preparing material for the time capsule, which includes artwork, photographs and items of school uniform.

At the event, the pupils will help to bury the time capsule safely within the foundations so that in years to come, should the time capsule be excavated, a future generation of young people can get a snapshot of what school life was like in 2010.

The event will also mark the start of a wider programme of involvement from local schools, colleges and universities in this community building project.

Charlotte Davis, headteacher of William Cowper School said: “The scale and importance of the project, combined with the benefits it will bring for the community, make it a perfect opportunity for my pupils to gain invaluable learning and experience, and this could even be the catalyst for a future career in construction.

“For some, the building could be their workplace of the future.”

Importantly the wider programme will see children learn the importance of site safety and the dangers associated with a construction site.

Thomas Vale, the contractors on the project, are to liaise with schools and provide a series of safety presentations, which give them an invaluable insight into what is involved in major building works.

Sustainability is a vital element of the project – the building has been designed with a range of sustainable features which includes innovative 'brown roofs'.

These roofs are made up of the original local plants which will be planted on top of the building structure to help preserve the local wildlife.  In particular, it will ensure a continual supply of food to help protect a special local bird - the Black Redstart.

The completed building will also have a positive impact on the way services are delivered to the young people of Birmingham. It forms part of a wider programme of property transformation and rationalisation - the Working for the Future programme - which is helping council employees to work in new, more efficient ways so that they can deliver better and more effective services - and saving local tax payers money.

Cllr Les Lawrence, Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Families, said: “I'd like to thank the children from the schools involved. By taking part in events such as this, these children are helping to shape the future of Birmingham and of the council. Their enthusiasm and creativity shows a taste of the skills and energy we can look forward to.”

“And I'm very excited about the future for our city and the way in which the council will deliver its services. The new building, here are Woodcock Street, along with our new workspace at buildings such as Lancaster Circus and Lifford House, will help employees deliver a much needed improvement in services to our children.”

Tony Hyde, Managing Director of Thomas Vale, added: “At Thomas Vale, we are strongly committed to helping the local community through our construction projects and Woodcock Street is a prime example.

“It's great to see that so many young people benefiting – not just through a range of exciting learning opportunities over the next 12 months but also through better services and improved workplaces for the future.”


Notes to editors

1. Business Transformation is Birmingham City Council's ambitious nine-strand programme which aims to modernise and enhance services delivered across the whole authority to citizens. It is projected that the programme will realise benefits of around £1billion over the ten years to 2016.

2. Service Birmingham is a strategic partnership between Birmingham City Council and Capita which will support a transformation in the way the council works; improving services and contributing to its efficiency agenda. This strategic partnership forms part of the council’s objective to find better and more innovative ways of delivering services for the benefit of employees and citizens. The principle of this joint venture focuses on the provision of cost effective, sector leading, ICT services and in supporting the council in achieving its business transformation objectives.

3. Working for the Future, an essential part of the council's wider Business Transformation programme, will consolidate the operational office portfolio and will be a catalyst for increasing workforce agility across the council contributing to the delivery of four key outcomes: better customer service, improved workplaces and work styles, greater sustainability and lower property operating costs. The Central Administrative Buildings (CAB) element of WFTF programme is set to realise £100million of net benefits over 25 years.

4. The capsule will be buried between 10.30am and 11am on March 30. Media representatives are invited to attend and must call the Birmingham City Council press office to confirm interest. All safety equipment will be provided on arrival at site - please indicate your shoe size in advance. More detailed instructions on how to get to the site are available on request.

For further information contact Kris Kowalewski on 0121 303 3621

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