A Lincolnshire media production company has started development of an innovative new tourism app thanks to grant funding awarded from BGI Lincolnshire – Lincolnshire County Council’s ERDF-funded business growth and innovation support programme.
Blueprint: Film, an award-winning Lincoln-based production company specialising in the creation of commercial films, documentaries and charity campaigns, works with communities and businesses using multimedia, primarily film, to tell engaging stories.
With over 10 years of experience, they have worked with companies such as Lincolnshire Co-op, the NHS, National Citizen Service and the British Heart Foundation – however, after hearing about BGI Lincolnshire, the company decided to press ahead with the development of an idea that had been in the works since 2013.
Darren Bolton, Director of Blueprint: Film, said:
We’ve been working on our Hidden History project for a couple of years now, but only as a series of as one-off projects. We always thought the project could be developed into something bigger, though.
The idea behind it is to create a platform that allows people to use their mobile devices, via GPS, to lead a guided historical walk around a town, village, or city, taking users to various places of interest. Once there, the app would play a short and engaging audio clip or documentary about that specific location.
After speaking with BGI Lincolnshire advisors and completing the grant application process, Blueprint was awarded £9,750 in match funding to develop the Hidden History app further.
As a result, Blueprint is working with an app developer to create a template system that can be reused for multiple clients and locations, rather than creating brand-new sites and apps as they have had to do in the past.
Creating bespoke apps and sites for each new area has been quite expensive, but now that we have a developer working on a template for the app, we hope to launch Hidden History more widely during Spring 2016.
We definitely view the app as a new profit stream for us. Once it’s near completion, we plan to market it directly to heritage sites across the UK that have recently received funding, offering the service to them as a way of better engaging with guests and attracting more visitors.
Russell Copley, Director with Greenborough Management, one of BGI Lincolnshire’s support providers, commented:
Hidden History is one of those really great ideas that costs quite a lot to develop properly, but luckily BGI has been able to provide Blueprint with the funding needed to bring the project to a wider audience.
By reducing the cost and time of making app and corresponding websites for multiple locations, Blueprint will almost definitely be on track to increase turnover once Hidden History gains traction and attracts attention from within the heritage and culture tourism industry. I, for one, am looking forward to trying it!