Published: Sun, May 13, 2018
Research | By Jody Lindsey

Time Travellers Welcome To Attend Stephen Hawking's Memorial Service

Time Travellers Welcome To Attend Stephen Hawking's Memorial Service

One of the most endearing stories about the late Stephen Hawking was when he put out an invite to time travellers to attend a party of his - but no one came.

During the ceremony, the ashes of one of the world's best-known theoretical physicists, who died in March aged 76, will be buried between the graves of fellow scientists Sir Isaac Newton and Charles Darwin.

London, May 12 A memorial service for Stephen Hawking at Westminster Abbey in London next month, open to 1,000 members of the public, may just have some "time travellers" in the gathering.

When those going onto the online memorial service ballot click on the date of birth section, a pop-up box allows people to put in dates from 2019 to 2038.

Hawking himself made mention in one of his lectures that rapid space-travel or travel back in time can not be ruled out based on current understanding.

'None did, but it seems ideal that the memorial website allows people born in the future to attend the service.

This is quite fitting, the blogger noted, as in 2009 Hawking threw a party for time travelers to see if they'd come.

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He dressed up and waited for time travellers to arrive at a particular location at the University of Cambridge on June 28, 2009.

A spokesman for the foundation told the BBC that while applicants appear - so far - to be from the present day, 'we can not exclude the possibility of time travel as it has not been disproven to our satisfaction. "All things are possible until proven otherwise", said the Stephen Hawking Foundation.

"But so far we have had applications from all round the world, and we do mean round - there are no flat-Earthers here".

Despite his little party trick not working when he was alive, he wasn't completely sold on the idea that time travel was impossible.

"Rapid space-travel, or travel back in time, can't be ruled out, according to our present understanding", Hawking said during a 1999 lecture entitled "Space and Time Warps", cautioning however against the "great logical problems" such a feat might engender". The service is set to be attended by Hawking's family, friends and colleagues.

He nonetheless continued to deliver ground-breaking work on cosmology, black holes and quantum physics.

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