Make dad's day by being a part of history at university Community Day

Posted on Tuesday 14th June 2011

The University of Birmingham is inviting visitors of their annual Community Day to make their mark in history by contributing to a time capsule that is set to be buried at the entrance of the new £16m state-of-the-art Bramall Music Building development, in a project to be unearthed in fifty years time.

This Father’s Day, the University of Birmingham’s Edgbaston campus is set to open its doors once again to the local community, for the second University of Birmingham Community Day, where one of the main highlights will be the ceremonial burial of a fifty year time capsule following an address by Vice-Chancellor, Professor David Eastwood. Visitors will have the opportunity to sign a scroll and children can add their drawings to a document which will be included alongside a host of other university and twenty-first century memorabilia.

Winning entries of a local primary school drawing competition to design a musical instrument of the future will be buried together with a photograph of English composer and the University’s first Professor of Music, Sir Edward Elgar, the winning score of a student composition competition and the original fundraising campaign brochure from the University for the development set to open in 2012.

Professor John Whenham, Head of the University’s Department of Music said:

“The time capsule gives the Department of Music a chance to look back over the last century of the Department’s existence and forward to the bright future promised for our students by the build of the Bramall Building and Elgar Concert Hall.

“We are, therefore, including in the time capsule a copy of the photograph of Sir Edward Elgar taken in 1905, the year in which he was appointed the first Professor of Music here at the University of Birmingham, a photograph of last year’s Music graduates, and the manuscript of a fanfare specially written for the time capsule ceremony by student composer James Woolliscroft.”

Director of Development and Alumni Relations, Nick Blinco, added:

“It is a testament to the generosity of staff, students, alumni and friends that more than 240 donors have together given more than £5million to this extraordinary project. Together with the University’s own investment, this will help us to provide a truly outstanding home for our world-class Department of Music, and a superb regional concert venue. We are grateful to everyone for helping to make this possible.”

The time capsule burial will form the centrepiece of the University’s Community Day programme of events which will provide a fun filled day of hands-on activities, public lectures and stalls, offering something suitable for all of the family.

Activities include: rides in the University’s fleet of hydrogen cars, a penalty shoot-out with Birmingham City FC and a chance to experience a windsurf simulator, as well as dance workshops run by student societies, a funfair and entertainment from two university bands. University academics will be delivering fun and interesting lectures throughout the day and the University’s Health Research Bus will be on hand to provide information on leading healthier lives and reducing the risk of cancer, which children will be able to put into practice with a mini gym.

Event organiser and Head of Stakeholder Relations, Kirsty Mack commented:

“Last year’s first Community Day went beyond our expectations; over 5,000 visitors descended onto campus and took part in excess of seventy different activities, even the weather was on our side, and we are hoping that this year’s event will be even bigger and better.

“We have over 100 activities taking place with something for everyone to enjoy. We are really looking forward to welcoming the Birmingham community onto campus once again and want to encourage them to take this opportunity to explore their university. We hope that this day also provides an insight into the facilities and activities that we have available for the community all year round.”

The University’s unique heritage attraction, Winterbourne House and Garden, the geological collections in the Lapworth Museum and their very own art gallery, The Barber Institute of Fine Art will also be open and running an selection of workshops and activities throughout the day.

As well as all of this, there will also be the chance to make a Father’s Day card and have photos taken and printed for fathers and their children. For more information about Community Day and the programme of events, please visit the website: www.birmingham.ac.uk/community/communityday.

Community Day is taking place at the University of Birmingham on Sunday 19 June from 11.00am – 4.00pm. For more information, please visit the website or contact community@contacts.bham.ac.uk or 0121 414 8130.

Notes to Editors

• Community Day is free to all visitors, although there will be a small charge of £1 for Winterbourne Gardens, the house can be entered free of charge.

• Time capsule event itinerary:

o 11.00am – 2.00pm – Time capsule exhibition and opportunity to create a message to be buried
o 2.00pm – 2.15pm – Competition winners announced
o 2.15pm – 2.30pm – Speeches
o 2.30pm – 2.45pm – Burial
o 3.00pm – 4.00pm – ‘Find out more about the Bramall Music Building’ presentation

For further media information, please contact Amy Cory, University of Birmingham Press Office, via 0121 414 6029 or a.cory@bham.ac.uk