We believe that new technologies have a large role to play in engaging new audiences with heritage and the environment, so will be introducing some through this project. Our creative digital engagement experts at the Mixed Reality Lab (University of Nottingham's Computer Science department) will be working the project team to bring hidden heritage to life through a free artcodes app which allows images to be scanned with a smartphone or tablet and linked to online content. We are commissioning an artist to draw the design and will work with them to ensure that it scans easily.
The aim of this project is to encourage people to engage with the history of Rushden as they walk or cycle along the Greenway path between Rushden town centre and the new Rushden Lakes shopping centre with the Nene Wetlands nature reserve. As it was once the route of the Rushden and Higham branch railway line, built to transport leather and shoes in and out of the town, the app will have a theme of the railway, with various pieces of hidden heritage to discover at each 'station stop' on the app, which will be regularly updated with new information to find out about.
This section of the Greenway will be revitalised by the 'Out to Water, Into History' project, which is also part of Nenescape, through habitat improvements, better signage and an inviting gateway.