The National Memorial
Arboretum, in Staffordshire, has launched a new augmented reality experience, ARboretum, for the Easter school
holidays through to June. Pre-booked visitors to the 150-acre garden and
woodland site can download a free app on their smartphone (Apple or Android),
allowing them to interact with a cast of colourful characters as they discover
memorials connected with the emergency services and other organisations that
have been involved in the pandemic response.
Blu, Kit and Sam, a trio of
new characters that were inspired by designs created by a young artist, help
visitors on their journey and bring the stories behind the Arboretum to life.
This diverse group of characters with distinct personalities facilitates a
series of fun activities designed to allow families to learn about Remembrance,
teamwork and reflection. At each of the eight locations around the Arboretum,
an augmented reality character will appear, assist with the delivery of an
activity and help people learn about some of the incredible organisations that
have been working in our communities and serving our country throughout the
This innovative experience is
part of a new programme of activities to celebrate Our Everyday Heroes in the
emergency services and other organisations that routinely make an invaluable
contribution to national life. Covid-19 has presented a crisis on a scale not
seen since the Second World War and Our Everyday Heroes have risen to the
challenge and served valiantly in our time of greatest need.
ARboretum was developed by local virtual and
augmented reality experience experts at Fennec Labs, based in Stafford. It is
available for download for free from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.
This new free experience is designed for visitors aged seven and over when
accompanied by an adult and will be available until at least June 2021.
- Chris Ansell, Head of Participation and Learning at the National Memorial Arboretum
- Ben Woodford, Co-Founder and Lead Developer at Fennec Labs