15 September 2018

Experience Castlegate

See the past, present and future of Sheffield at the same time.

Venue: Futurecade, Millennium Galleries
Dates: 20th - 27th September

Experience Sheffield Castle through an augmented reality model, learn about recent archaeological research and see visions of the future from Sheffield architecture students.

Experience Castlegate brings together academics from Architecture, Archaeology, Computer Science with city partners Human Studio, to develop the first full 3D digital model of Sheffield Castle.

As part of the Festival of the Mind, researchers are showcasing work from an AHRC ‘Immersive Experiences’ research project which uses the Castlegate area of Sheffield City Centre as a testbed to demonstrate how immersive digital technologies can harness cultural heritage and community engagement in urban regeneration.

An Augmented Reality prototype has been developed to show how on-site digital experience can engage people in the site’s history, revealing its current potential and raising aspirations for a locally relevant and vibrant future.

In the Futurecade visitors will be able to experience a 3D digital model of Sheffield’s Castle through Augmented Reality. This will be the first public view of a new model of the Castle based on recent archaeological research of this hidden, yet incredibly important, piece of Sheffield’s history.


The Festival of the Mind is a fantastic opportunity to showcase how the work that our students and staff produce in partnership with community groups is benefiting the city of Sheffield.

Carolyn Butterworth 

Senior University Teacher at the Sheffield School of Architecture


The Castle will spring into view, overlaid upon the contemporary site as the public look at the digital model through IPads.

Alongside the model will be a film showing recent archaeological research and future visions of the site by architecture masters students. Visitors will be encouraged to contribute ideas to the ongoing development of the Castle site and this engagement will inform the process of community-led regeneration of the Castlegate area.

Carolyn Butterworth, Senior University Teacher at the Sheffield School of Architecture: "The Festival of the Mind is a fantastic opportunity to showcase how the work that our students and staff produce in partnership with community groups is benefiting the city of Sheffield. The Experience Castlegate project is part of a continuing process of co-production between the School of Architecture, our colleagues in Archaeology and local community groups, organisations and Sheffield City Council.

Through Live Projects, Studio work and Live Works we are developing ambitious design ideas, backed with strong research, in order to raise the collective ambition for the future of Castlegate. The development of an AR experience of the Castle is a powerful tool to engage people in conversations about the past, present and possible futures of the site."

Carolyn will give a public talk about the project with John Moreland (Archaeology) and Nick Bax (HumanVR) in the Speigeltent.