The Isles of Scilly Museum is to benefit from £700,000 of Government funding for new immersive technology.
Scilly's Museum, which recently welcomed a new curator, is one of five in Cornwall to be fitted with equipment such as virtual reality headsets, high definition projection techniques and computer generated imagery to help bring the region's heritage to life.
The funding boost follows a successful bid to the Coastal Communities Fund led by the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) with Cornwall Museums Partnership and Falmouth University.
Further investment will come from the LEP and Cornwall Council towards the total project cost of almost £770,000.
The Coastal Communities wAVE (Augmented & Virtual Experiences) project will bring together research experts, technologists and five local museums and their communities to take visitors on a compelling immersive and interactive journey to the past.
The technology will be developed by Falmouth University in partnership with Cornwall Museums Partnership and will be launched in phases at the Telegraph Museum Porthcurno; Castle Heritage Centre, Bude; St Agnes Museum; Isles of Scilly Museum and the Old Guildhall Museum & Gaol in Looe between April this year and the end of 2020.
The project is part of the LEP’s strategy to harness the cultural tourism strengths of Cornwall and Scilly and the rapidly growing digital sector to enhance the visitor experience and attract new visitors to the region. It is expected to boost footfall to participating museums by almost 25,000 people per year, create 17 new jobs and generate more than half a million pounds for the economy annually.
The Government’s investment is from the fifth round of the Coastal Communities Fund and is part of a £15.4m package awarded to 20 projects across the South West Region.
Glenn Caplin, Chief Executive of the Cornwall and isles of Scilly LEP, said that the project will "help five coastal communities diversify their economies by accessing new, year-round and higher value tourism markets, boosting footfall and creating and sustaining jobs".
Communities Secretary James Brokenshire said: “I am determined to support investment and development of our coastal communities across the South West and create an economy that works for everyone as we prepare for Brexit and beyond."