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Swansea library visitors set to take high-tech trip back in time

King's Dock, Swansea, in years gone by - an image from StoryTrails Swansea. Pic: People's Collection Wales/ Swansea Library and Information Service

Visitors to Swansea Central Library will enjoy a remarkable look at the city’s past this week – with a high-tech new style of storytelling.

Stories from the city will be given a vibrant fresh look thanks to a project that harnesses virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR).

The free-entry immersive experience known as StoryTrails is due to be staged at the Central Library this Wednesday and Thursday.

Council cabinet member Elliott King said: “StoryTrails is the UK’s largest ever immersive storytelling project. It’s great for Swansea to be one of the 15 venues and it’s great for our library staff to get involved.”

“This week’s event will allow local people to experience Swansea in a new way through the magic of AR and VR. They’ll use new technology to travel back in time, experiencing gripping local histories. It’ll be an amazing two days of fun for local people.”

StoryTrails is part of UNBOXED: Creativity in the UK, a ground-breaking UK-wide celebration of creativity in 2022 and is led by the National Centre for Immersive Storytelling: StoryFutures Academy.

It will visit the Central Library, in the Civic Centre, on Wednesday and Thursday from 11am-7pm when local creative talent will help showcase the stories.

Professor James Bennett, director of StoryFutures and StoryTrails, said: “This is about getting people excited about where they live – helping them connect with stories of their towns and cities from the past and present through a new lens.

“New technologies like AR and VR can help build these connections and reignite people’s passion for the past.”