ONLY time would tell if it would ever be discovered.

And this week, children and their parents gathered once again in eager anticipation at Claypool Primary School to see if their elusive time capsule had been found.

The capsule containing children's treasured items was buried seven years ago by Year Six pupils when they were in reception — and there were very real fears it would remain lost in time after attempts to unearth it at a special ceremony failed.

But not to be outdone by the missing capsule, youngsters at the Horwich school came up with the ingenious idea to write to Bolton Metal Detecting Club, whose members were only too happy to help.

Headteacher Amanda Hulme said: "It was buried only 30cm away from where we were looking and it was found within five minutes.

"Children who have moved away came back.

"We opened the time capsule which contained items put in by the pupils."

Items included toys, a glass paper weight, 3D glasses, as well as toys and a letter from their teachers at the time.

It stated: "Well done for remembering to dig up your treasure chest. I hope you have enjoyed your time at Claypool Primary School. I'm sure you are still the best class in the school like you were in 2011-2012. I hope you enjoy your treasure. Good luck for the future."

Mrs Hulme said: "One of the pupils, Grace Nicol had put in a skipping rope hoping that when the time capsule was opened she would be able to skip."

She added: "It was a lovely special occasion and great fun for the pupils and we will do it again for our reception children — but this time putting the time capsule in a tower, which will be a high up cupboard."