York Castle Museum launches ‘time capsule’ project to document life in lockdown – Here’s how to take part

Kirkgate in the York Castle Museum
11 May 2020 @ 12.20 pm
| News

The highs, the lows, the memorable and the mundane – York Castle Museum is inviting people to create their own Covid-19 time capsule to document their thoughts on living through a pandemic for future generations.

The museum, which holds one of the most significant collections of everyday life in the country, has launched the project designed for everyone of all ages to record how they feel about the current situation and how their lives have changed.

To help, the museum’s public engagement team have created a menu of activities for people to complete and upload or bring as a physical time capsule to York Castle Museum when we’re open.

Participants have until May 31 to complete any or all of the activities.

Record your experiences

York Castle Museum

Jo Killeya, head of public engagement, collections and curatorial, said: “We are in the middle of a very challenging situation which has dramatically changed everyday life for all of us in many different ways.

“As a social history museum, we want to record the thoughts, feelings, experiences and emotions of people within a York Castle Museum Covid-19 time capsule.

“The ten activities are designed to help you do this – it could be a letter or film to your younger self telling you what you have learnt since living in lockdown, or an object which sums up the whole experience for you.

“Maybe it is a sound recording of birdsong on your street, quiet from the lack of traffic, or even pictures of your new hairstyle, with a before and after shot! 

“This is a project for everyone, no matter how your life has changed, we want to hear about it. You could do an individual response, or with your family or your school if you are still attending.

“We hope we get a wide variety of capsules submitted to show the huge effect this has had on all of us, be it in very different ways.”

How to join in

A sign in a York window in March. Photograph: Richard McDougall

To take part, please go here.

Once you have signed up, you will receive a link via email, to your individual time capsule folder, where you can upload your time capsule content.   

If you do not have email, please call 01904 687687 for details of how to take part.

There are ten activities for you to choose from – you can complete as many or as few as you wish.  

These are:

  • A letter or film to your six month younger self
  • A “before and after” photo of something affected by lockdown
  • Create a picture or visual image that reflects your response to the experience
  • A dream conversation with someone you’re missing during lockdown
  • Choose one object which represents lockdown to you
  • 24 hour task – write down everything you do in a day – no matter how mundane
  • Record a sound or tell us your experiences of sounds that have changed
  • Tell us about anything you have connected or reconnected with – old hobbies, friendships, new skills?
  • Write a newspaper article or think of a series of headlines that represent your experience
  • Letter of Reflection – Write a letter to your future self sharing your thoughts, feelings and reflections.

Participants can select whether their time capsule remains anonymous, but by uploading your content they agree to the museum using the content provided.