Time travellers have been invited to attend Stephen Hawking's memorial service

Time travellers invited to Stephen Hawking's memorial service

His ashes are being interred on June 15 at London's Westminster Abbey, by the graves of fellow scientific giants Isaac Newton and Charles Darwin.

Professor Hawking, who died on March 14, 2018 at the age of 76, believed time travel could be achieved.

Hawking famously staged a party for time travellers in 2009, complete with champagne and a banner saying, "Welcome time travellers".

Westminster Abbey will also be open to the public free of charge after the service so people can pay their respects at his grave.

People can enter in a date right up to 31 December 2038 and still apply.

It's only fitting to include this nod to time travellers in the application, given Hawking did play with the idea of time travel in the past.

"No one came, but it seems flawless that now the reminder service's website will be able to assist people born in the future".

London travel blogger IanVisits was among those who noticed the quirk that allows people born more than 20 years into the future to apply.

While all applicants appear to be from the present day, a spokesman for the Stephen Hawking Foundation said: "We can not exclude the possibility of time travel as it has not been disproven to our satisfaction. Anything is possible until proven otherwise", said one representative of the Stephen Hawking Foundation. If you want the chance to attend his memorial, the ballot closes at midnight tomorrow on 15 May, so get your applications in now - unless you're a time traveller, then you have all the time in the world.

Sarah Bridle, a professor of Astrophysics at the University of Manchester, told BBC Radio that Hawking had remained curious about the potential for time travel, even after his party in 2009. The physics professor said he put out the invitations after the event, with the thinking that if time travel was possible, people would leap back a few years to go to the party.

The service is set to be attended by Hawking's family, friends and colleagues.

Commenting on having an "extraordinary" time working in the field of cosmology, he said he was happy to have made a contribution "to our understanding of black holes and the origin of the universe".

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