The Plankbridge time capsule

One of the questions I’m often asked by customers on a workshop tour is ‘What is the lifespan of a Plankbridge hut?’ As each hut is based on the construction of the quintessential Victorian shepherd’s hut, with signature wheels made from molten iron, powder-coated and shot-blasted solid steel chassis, corrugated iron roof and durable English oak door, it’s safe to say that nobody from The Repair Shop will be going anywhere near it for at least 100 years.

The question naturally leads on to me telling them about something that has crept into Plankbridge lore – the time capsule secreted under every hut floor. Just as Jane and I used to get excited about finding relics of historical interest hidden in the shepherd’s huts we restored back in the early days – an old newspaper dating back to World War I rolled up by a lone shepherd to plug a draught; pencil drawings of old motorcars; writing on the wall by a shepherd lamenting the fact that it had snowed on May 8th 1904 – we hide a time capsule with items that show what life was like on the day their hut was delivered. 

Containing a printed copy of the hut design and a handwritten postcard listing the craftspeople who built it, a copy of a Dorset magazine and the day’s news, 50p, as well as Plankbridge brochure and gardening information from the Bumblebee Conservation Trust, the location of each time capsule is a closely guarded secret within the fabric of the hut. And because each hut is heirloom quality, intended to be passed down through the generations, those secrets might not be unearthed for a very long time, if ever. Which, I can’t help thinking, is all part of the magic. 

Written by Richard, Plankbridge co-founder

  • Read more of our ‘Building a shepherd’s hut’ blogs here
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