Telford’s e-Innovation Centre has helped create a new website that will allow visitors to follow the redevelopment of one of the region’s most popular museums.
Blists Hill Victorian Town is one of the 10 museums in and around the World Heritage Site at Ironbridge Gorge and allows visitors a unique insight into life in Shropshire during the 19th century.
The museum is being developed to create a new street – a project that is being funded by Advantage West Midlands and the European Regional Development Fund – and the new website has been established to allow people to follow its progress as offer their feedback and memories.
Dr Garry Homer, director of the e-Innovation Centre, which has created the website as well as providing training for staff at the museum in updating and maintaining the site, said: “We welcome the opportunity to work with a major heritage site such as Ironbridge Gorge Museum; the juxtaposition of Victorian technology with 21st century technology is quite demanding”.
To allow visitors to follow the project a remote camera at the development site collates time-lapse images for the website as the new street is being built. Through this visitors to the website can watch the appearance of the new exhibits such as the sweetshop, photographers, drapers and fried-fish dealers as they emerge from the mud and post their comments for discussion.
Video clips and podcasts are also available as well as the time-lapse photographs and a forum allows information to be uploaded, shared and discussed by the general public.
A diary section includes latest news and events and plans, maps and historical research areas provide a comprehensive and informative picture of the Blists Hill development as a whole.
Head of marketing at Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust, Paul Gossage, said: “Our market research revealed that the public wished to be part of our development ‘journey’ and we believe that providing this insight into the project research and evolution is a vital initiative.”
To follow the progress of the project log on to www.blistshill.org.