Virtual Treasure at the First National Festival of Making

Visitors to the 1st UK National Festival of Making will be offered a breath-taking opportunity to play a unique virtual treasure hunt wearing highly advanced Virtual Reality headsets. In the game, they will explore Blackburn Cathedral, recreated down to the millimetre in 3D. Virtual clues will give an insight into the Cathedral’s rich tapestry spanning over 1400 years.


The game begins when a visitor dons the Virtual Reality headset. The wearer will be transported outside the doors of the cathedral, taking in the stone tower, which is almost fifty metres tall and constructed over a hundred years ago. The visitor will be free to explore the cathedral filled with fantastic sculptures, handmade wood carvings – and clues. Glowing lights, scattered throughout the cathedral, will guide the seeker down into the crypts, where ancient treasures await, buried long ago from raiding parties.

The virtual treasure hunt forms part of the ‘Making Digital’ element of the first National Festival of Making. It offers an unprecedented insight into how the latest technology is being used to transport people into places unseen by the public. It opens a swathe of opportunities in recreating the past and preserving artefacts too fragile to handle by hand.

The company behind the virtual treasure hunt, Hobs Studio, are experts in digitally modelling the real world. Hobs Studio recently built a 3D model of Liverpool city centre and digitally reproduced Manchester Town Hall in awe-inspiring detail. Architects, engineers, and construction companies use this technology to help design and construct buildings to an unprecedented level of accuracy.

Hobs Studio used the same 3D Laser Scanning Technology to capture and digitally reproduce Blackburn Cathedral. Its aim is to showcase the ‘Future of Making Things’ by using cutting edge 3D digital design and manufacturing technologies. The ultimate outcome: a celebration of the inspirational makers of the past through technology that is shaping our future, today.

For more information on Hobs Studio or Virtual Reality visit

12th - 13th May 2018 | Blackburn, Lancashire

The National Festival of Making Delivery Team


The National Festival of Making is supported with funding from Arts Council England, Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council and Heritage Lottery Fund