Archbishop launches augmented-reality trail at Peterborough Cathedral

12 April 2019

Visitors can rearrange Jesus and his disciples in a jigsaw of the Apse Chapel ceiling

Matthew Roberts

The Archbishop of Canterbury tests out the app with young people in Peterborough Cathedral, on Wednesday

The Archbishop of Canterbury tests out the app with young people in Peterborough Cathedral, on Wednesday

VISITORS to Peterborough Cathedral can watch fish leap from the font, rearrange Jesus and his disciples in a jigsaw of the Apse Chapel ceiling, and play tunes in the choir stalls in an augmented-reality trail.

The trail, powered by the Gamar app, was launched by the Archbishop of Canterbury on the last day of his tour of the diocese, on Wednesday.

The app, which is free to download to smartphone devices, gives visitors snippets of information about the history and purpose of the cathedral on each stop on the trail, as well as augmented-reality animations, games, and puzzles.

Once downloaded, the trail does not need an internet connection to run. It can be played without sound, but sound effects can be played through headphones at some stops.

Similar trails have been made by the Gamar app for tourist attractions including the British Museum and Madame Tussauds, as well as Belvoir Castle and Doddington Hall, in the area.

The Dean of Peterborough, the Very Revd Chris Dalliston, said that the app had been designed with a family audience in mind, “but it is really for anyone who likes to reach for their phone, or to play a game, as a way to find things out. I’d encourage anyone to download it, then come along during the Easter holidays to give it a try. We’d love to have your feedback.”

Archbishop Welby said on Wednesday: “Cathedrals are places that do exciting, imaginative things, and I warmly welcome this innovative new way of helping people engage with sacred spaces, and, ultimately, with Jesus Christ.”

The Archbishop’s visit also included the Northampton Saints RFC stadium; Queensgate shopping centre; the Wellbeing Café at St Giles’, Peterborough; and the Light Project Peterborough, a Christian charity that runs the Garden House for homeless people in the city.

To download the app, visit the Apple App Store or Google Play, search for “Gamar Ltd”, and then “Peterborough Cathedral Trail”.

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