The Reliant Motor Club is delighted to have been involved with a new Augmented reality app officially released by Tamworth Borough Council (TBC) on December 13th 2021. The new Augmented reality (AR) app showcases the town’s rich history with an AR trail that has been developed throughout the town centre. This new experience follows the successful AR trail launched in Tamworth Castle earlier this year. TBC commissioned The Peel Entertainment Group to create the trail, bringing Tamworth’s immense history to life in the palm of your hand.
People are invited to spend a couple of hours in the fresh air to experience the excitement of the latest technology and journey ‘back to the future’ and discover the 16 AR locations on the trail. As you explore the streets using the app, you will find yourself coming face to face with some of the town’s best loved historical characters, discovering the resilience of its community and how Tamworth has continued to thrive through many times of adversity.
Our Chairman (Elvis Payne) was contacted by the TBC in mid-2021 to assist with all things Reliant and to both provide information on Reliant points throughout the town and also to provide his opinion on an AR Reliant Robin that will appear right before you in the street.
Based on a 1975 Reliant “Super” Robin 850 the original AR Robin was amazingly accurate and so Elvis only needed to suggest minor changes to the front badge, the front grille, the position of the spot lamps and the types of bumpers fitted as the prototype AR Robin had rubber strips along the length of the bumper rather than chrome over riders. During the initial testing the Robin was yellow although within the finished app has now turned orange.
Prior to the launch Elvis, along with various Tamworth Councilors, was sent a secret link to the app so that they could download and test it – although there was only a small test window from 9am Monday – 5pm on the Wednesday to test it. Therefore being at work on Dec 7th 2021 Elvis decided to visit the town afterwards, even though the app recommends day light for best results. As it happened though with all the Christmas lights the town was really well lit and so the app worked amazingly well.
He arrived at Church Street in Tamworth at around 5:40pm and pulled out his phone. Although the house has long gone, Church Street is the birth place of Reliant co-founder Tom Williams who was born at 43 Church Street in 1890. Once he loaded the app, he was presented with a map of Tamworth which pinpoints his location and shows a silhouette of a Reliant on screen, once positioned in the right spot, he was informed that this was the birthplace of Tom Williams and was then invited to turn on my camera and scan the area.
As he did this, suddenly a Reliant Robin appeared in front of him and he commented on how impressed he was with the detail, holding your phone up you can actually walk all the way around the car. Walking behind the Robin you note that the exhaust has a slight plume of smoke coming from it as the engine is running and then standing back in front of the Reliant, the headlamps illuminate, the engine revs and it starts doing doughnuts in front of you leaving tyre tracks on the floor. With the app you can also capture photos of this just to prove you did see it.
As for Church Street, it was by sheer coincidence that the annual Reliant Gathering in Tamworth should be held there and indeed was there for several years before it was discovered that this was Tom Williams’ birth place. This means at the next Reliant Gathering there will be one extra Robin there, but only visible to those with the app. The question is however, who will be the first to take a photo of their Reliant next to the AR Reliant?
For those who live in Tamworth, or indeed plan to visit it, people are invited to download the FREE App and follow the directions or follow the link to the app at: http://www.visittamworth.co.uk/historic-trail. Should you visit and take photos then please send them to us, we would love to see them.