Thursday 17 August 2017

Voice from history exposed by quake

The fallen statue of Christchurch's founder, Irishman John Robert Godley (AP)
The fallen statue of Christchurch's founder, Irishman John Robert Godley (AP)

Amid the damage of the devastating New Zealand earthquake has come an unlikely discovery - two time capsules that fell out of a 19th century statue that toppled over in the disaster.

Christchurch Major Bob Parker said a handwritten parchment in a bottle and a sealed copper cylinder believed to contain historic documents were discovered inside the statue of one of the city's founders, Irishman John Robert Godley.

The statue, which stood in the city's main square near its historic cathedral, fell during the earthquake on February 22 that killed at least 155 people.

Museum experts were examining the items, which appeared to contain a message from the city's founders expressing their vision for it.

Mr Parker said: "It seems almost providential that they have come to light now to provide the inspiration we need in this most difficult time."

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