The Reading Abbey Experience was a project with the goal to create a Virtual Tour of the historic Reading Abbey.The Abbey has been closed to the public since 2009 due to the falling debris from the site and declared a health and safety hazard. The Abbey Experience aimed to enable the public to explore the Abbey in a safe manner. The project carried out by students of Reading College's Computing and History department took nearly 10 months from start to finish with over 7,000 individual photos being taken of the Abbey.
Article was originally posted by getReading
A fascinating tour around one of Reading's historic landmarks will be projected in the town centre after technology students brought the Abbey ruins to life.
As part of Reading Year of Culture, the students at Reading College have created a virtual replica of the of ruins, thought to contain the remains of King Henry I.
And now, to coincide with the Light Up Reading trail, the virtual tour will be projected onto the Bristol and West Arcade building in Town Hall Square from 6pm to 8pm until Friday, December 16.
Student John Batchelor said: "This project has allowed us to apply what we have learnt in our course in a real life context, for a specific purpose and also with a real deadline.
"This has built our confidence and given us all a great sense of achievement.
"It has developed entrepreneurial skills, like decision making and project management. We are hoping to go on to do further projects as a team in the future."
The virtual replica - which has taken the computing and systems development students at the college in King's Road 10 months to make - has been created by taking and stitching together more than 7,000 photos.
They also worked with A-level history students to create a website where visitors can click on specific areas of the Abbey replica to access historical information.
John Painter, the secretary of the friends of Reading Abbey said: "It makes you realise that there is actually a lot of ruin left. It is very impressive."
As well being included in the December illumination trail, the tour forms part of a new Reading Abbey experience, launched on Thursday, December 8, allowing passers by to explore the Abbey Ruins in 3D and find out about some of the artefacts held within Reading Museum.
Producer of Reading Year of Culture, Zsuzsi Lindsay, said: "Projects like this are vital for our next generation, offering development opportunities in a safe environment.
"The output of this project also speaks volumes for Reading as a town.
"If this is the level of our technologists coming out of Reading College, being able to create an experience using seven different programming languages, then the future of our digital creative sector is very bright."
Staff and students have dedicated more than 800 hours to create the virtual projection, made up of to two PCs with 64 Gig of RAM, a 7th Generation i7 Processor and seven programming languages.