Augmented reality app launched allowing residents to explore Northampton town centre in a whole new way

Help Father Christmas collect some special items for the big day or explore the town’s past by meeting the historical people who made the town what it is today

By Megan Hillery
Tuesday, 8th December 2020, 2:20 pm
Updated Tuesday, 8th December 2020, 2:22 pm
'Explore Northampton' offers two different interactive experiences that give residents a new way to get to know the town's history better.
'Explore Northampton' offers two different interactive experiences that give residents a new way to get to know the town's history better.

Northampton Borough Council has launched a new augmented reality app that will enable residents to explore the town through highly interactive digital experiences.

The app, ‘Explore Northampton’, consists of two interactive experiences called ‘Discover Christmas’ and ‘A Walk in the Past’.

Cabinet Member for Community Engagement and Safety, Cllr Anna King, said: “With towns having to adapt to the challenges of the pandemic, we are proud to have responded by developing a playful, creative and innovative way for residents to engage and enjoy the town using augmented reality experiences on offer through the Explore Northampton app.

“With regular content updates, there’s an experience for everyone, from augmented historical trails to interactive events and exhibitions.”

The ‘Discover Christmas’ experience offers a digital festive trail for children where they venture out into Northampton town centre and help Father Christmas collect all things needed for the big day. On the trail, children will be able to see in augmented reality and collect items such as Christmas trees, elves, reindeers and presents.

Through the app, they will also be able to meet Father Christmas at Delapre Abbey once they have completed the trail and collected all of the items. People can, alternatively, augment Father Christmas in their own homes to have a personal visit and receive a special Christmas message.

The ‘Walk in the Past’ experience takes residents on a journey to Northampton’s past to meet the people who made the town we know today. Significant Northamptonshire personalities of the past will spring to life on the app and tell their story of how they had a lasting impact on the county.

History enthusiasts will be able to meet a number of personalities including the first female minister in Parliament to the football player turned war hero.

Cllr Anna King added: “I want to thank everyone for their efforts in bringing this platform to life as we went through local restrictions and two national lockdowns. The experiences enlisted the help of local actors, amateur dramatics and Theatre Director Tamsyn Payne and AR Media.”

Stickers have additionally been placed in the different locations on the trail to assist people in grinding the personalities of the past and the festive trial.

The app will be regularly updated with new experiences highlighting Northamptonshire's culture, history and people.

‘Explore Northampton’ is available to download from the Apple Store and Google Play.