Messages in a bottle bring back old Times

A workman with the Times - discovered in a time capsule under the church (pictured).
A workman with the Times - discovered in a time capsule under the church (pictured).

DUG Wydell found more than a message in a bottle when a Wath church was bulldozed.....

Hunting under the remains of the St James’ Missionary Church, the local historian found a buried time capsule containing several coins and an old South Yorkshire Times from 1901!

Wath Church that is being pulled down. Doug Wydelll story.

Wath Church that is being pulled down. Doug Wydelll story.

The Mexborough and Swinton edition from July 19, 1901, was placed inside a bottle and buried inside the foundation stone to commemorate the start of building works on the former Doncaster Road church.

Mr Wydell had researched the church prior to its demolition and had uncovered the existance of the bottle in a Times article dated July 25, 1901, which he read at a local library.

The article revealed the red brick church was built for the residents of Gore Hill and cost £2,000 to erect.

The money was raised from subscriptions and donations.

But in the early 1970s, the church was deconsecreated.

It was then used as a youth club, squash courts and, until last year, as a public bar.

This week, contractors from DSR Demolition extracted the small glass bottle.

Mr Wydell said he hoped the landowners would donate the bottle and the goods, either to the diocese, or to a future museum for “Wath and West Melton” which Mr Wydell said he hoped to create.

However, parts of the building will be “living on” in other structures.

Mr Wydell said the slates, timber and most of the bricks had been salvaged and “hand-cleaned” to be used again.

He added that plans for the vacant land are not yet known.

*Meanwhile in Conisbrough, Morley Place Junior School kids have laid their own time capsule.

This week pupils have buried a school uniform, tea-towel, school dinner menu, coins, a bus ticket and pictures of themselves at the new “Stone Castle” health centre on Gardens Lane.