Cartmel Priory

Travelling through time with Cartmel Priory.


Cartmel Priory


Travel & Tourism



Cartmel Priory is one of the oldest places of worship in the UK. But with such a rich history that can’t always be conveyed through information boards or guided tours, the Priory came to us looking for new ways to engage visitors with some of the stories from its 800-year past. What better way than VR?

After some research and consultation with the Priory’s historians and vicar, we focused on the story of ‘The Young Martyr’, a captivating tale of brave monks that refused to flee when King Henry VIII’s soldiers sacked the building during the time of the reformation.

To really immerse visitors in the story of the Young Martyr, we produced a one-of-a-kind virtual reality experience that was both engaging and educational. While VR is very much at the forefront of innovative visitor attractions in the UK, this was thought to be the first time a VR experience had ever been held in a church.

Hand-drawn illustrations inspired by marionettes and shadow puppets were recreated as 3D models, with movement and animation bringing each scene to life. The addition of professional voiceovers and a bespoke soundtrack all added mood and pace, with a custom-built gaming pod creating a permanent installation inside the Priory.

The end result is an immersive and engaging journey into the history of Cartmel Priory and a world first. More than 250 visitors had the privilege of experiencing it on its opening day, and it even attracted national media attention with a spot on BBC’s Songs of Praise. Future plans include distributing the VR experience to local schools and making it accessible to global audiences online through VR stores.


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