A rural electricity generating building in Sussex, England encapsulates time





2017 -  Time is captured in the preservation of the former electricity generating complex at Herstmonceux in Sussex, information that would not normally be available to anyone living outside the village of Herstmonceux, but with the advent of the digital revolution this may change if we can  secure the funding needed to develop the concept of the virtual museum.


This unique reminder of our past could have been open to the public, but for the onerous conditions that the local authority would seek to apply if the Trust were to allow site visits. Insurance too might then become an issue as would the cost of staff. The spanner thrown into the works by Wealden officials may work to our advantage if the site can be experienced as a cultural and learning experience by millions of people online. In our conservation works we receive no financial help from Historic England, the Heritage Lottery Fund, or Wealden District Council. This means that we have to work harder and more imaginatively than others who rely on (qualify for) state funding. Copyright © photograph 30 June 2017.




In the digital age, where the financial burden of works to be able to allow visitors to the site are beyond the capacity of the Trust and Wealden District Council have shown that they would be unwilling to allow repairs to the original specification or visitors to the site - where they appear not to want to encourage tourism in Sussex, the cost of the additional works to meet current building regulations might not only tend to undermine the originality of the structure that has stood the test of time, but also cause long term loss - and so detract from the conservation efforts of the Trust. For these reasons a virtual tour is planned to replace any opening to the public of the complex.


In terms of climate change, a virtual tour uses considerably less energy to educate the public, hence may be described as a low carbon economy project.





In furtherance of the Virtual Reality Museum of the future (the project) we are inviting help from video producers and IT specialists in the hope that we can make the experience something special and develop the technology for other museums around the world - again in the spirit of reducing carbon miles traveling to educational establishments - where a tour may be digital and equally informative.


In the UK our local authority are particularly keen to prevent carbon miles in Sussex, virtually (if you'll pardon the pun) bringing to a halt tourism and film production in a single blow. No wonder the rates are so high, where you are paying for their poor investment record overseas (immorality that should be illegal) and more maladministration than you could shake a stick at. All the more reason to think outside of the box, if we are to be able to share the amazing history attaching to this unusual building stretching back over 120 years - and still the building continues to support cutting edge innovation today.


If you have any ideas or proposals for such a project please contact Lime Park Heritage Trust. We understand that in some cases that grants may be available for innovative social and cultural projects as mentioned in some of the extracts of the support websites below.




Jameson Hunter filming in Sussex not allowed by Wealden District Council



FILMING NO GOWealden District Council's David Whibley explains in the letter above that although a permitted development, that in fact filming is not allowed in Sussex because of the Ashdown Forest and carbon emissions that may be associated with shooting scenes - no matter what the Secretaries of State intended. That is the danger with a conditional Permitted Development, with such wording the local authority will trip you up every time. This is one reason that we are going over to a virtual museum where no council can extract their pound of flesh. We would not want to upset Wealden in their efforts to preserve the ancient woodlands, no matter how disingenuous their intentions and hidden agendas, broadly revealed by repeated testing of the water.







A virtual museum is a digital entity that draws on the characteristics of a museum, in order to complement, enhance, or augment the museum experience through personalization, interactivity and richness of content. Virtual museums can perform as the digital footprint of a physical museum, or can act independently, while maintaining the authoritative status as bestowed by the International Council of Museums (ICOM) in its definition of a museum. In tandem with the ICOM mission of a physical museum, the virtual museum is also committed to public access; to both the knowledge systems imbedded in the collections and the systematic, and coherent organization of their display, as well as to their long-term preservation.

As with a traditional museum, a virtual museum can be designed around specific objects (such as an art museum or a natural history museum), or can consist of online exhibitions created from primary or secondary resources (as, for example in a science museum). Moreover, a virtual museum can refer to the mobile or World Wide Web offerings of traditional museums (e.g., displaying digital representations of its collections or exhibits); or can be born digital content such as, 3D environments, net art, virtual reality and digital art. Often, discussed in conjunction with other cultural institutions, a museum by definition, is essentially separate from its sister institutions such as a library or an archive. Virtual museums are usually, but not exclusively delivered electronically when they are denoted as online museums, hypermuseum, digital museum, cybermuseums or web museums.

There are several types of interactive environments. One is to re-create 3D space with visual representations of the museum by a 3D architectural metaphor, which provides a sense of place using various spatial references. They usually use 3D modelling, VRML (Virtual Reality Modelling Language) and now X3D(successor to VRML) for viewing.


There have been introduced various kinds of imaging techniques for building virtual museums, such as infrared reflectography, X-ray imaging, 3D laser scanning, IBMR (Image Based Rendering and Modeling) techniques. In the case of EU-funded projects, the ViHAP3D, a new virtual reality system for scanning museum artifacts, has been developed by EU researchers. Another interactive three-dimensional spatial environment is QTVR. Being a pre-rendered, fixed environment it is more restricted in regards to moving freely around in 3D space but the image quality can be superior to that of real-time rendered environments. This was especially the case in the mid-1990s when computing power and online speeds were limited.

Depending on the scientific position of the researchers, industry or instrumental use, virtual museums are regarded and used in different ways. For example, as a kind of creative activity; an innovative educational tool; a fashion or advertising project; а room with multimedia capabilities; the representation of the traditional Museum on the Internet; a gadget; the publication; website; type of communication; the electronic catalogue, etc.






MOBILE MUSEUMS - A mobile museum is a museum educational outreach program that bring the museum to the people rather than vice versa. Typically they can be in Recreational Vehicles (RVs) or trucks/trailers that drive to schools, libraries and rural events. Their business model is to use grant or donor support, as they goal is to make the museum exhibit accessible to underserved populations. Below are some examples of mobile museums.

SHARK IN A BUS - An ex MTT Perth 1957 vintage Leyland Worldmaster Bus featuring a 5m long Great White Shark (White Pointer) and hundreds of marine objects collected around Australia primarily in the 1960s and 70s. This private collection toured Australia and contains the shark purported to have inspired the artist Damien Hurst. Shark in a Bus is completely self funded.









Most physical museums now have an online presence, with varying degrees of online information. At one end of the spectrum, museums provide simple contact and background information, and a listing of exhibitions (brochure museums). On the other end of the spectrum are museums that exist only online, or those that have a physical building but offer extensive online exhibits, interactive online features, multimedia, and searchable or browsable collections (content museums, learning museums, virtual museums).

The following are a few other museums online:

DiMoDA is an online and touring museum of digital and virtual reality art. DiMoDA hosts exhibitions in partnership with galleries and museums around the world and features previous exhibitions as online downloads from their website.

International Museum of Women is an online-only museum that does not have a physical building and instead offers online exhibitions about women's issues globally as well as an online community. Online exhibitions include "Imagining Ourselves" (launched 2006) about women's identity, "Women, Power and Politics" (2008), and "Economica: Women and the Global Economy" (2009).

Girl Museum is an online-only museum that does not have a physical building and instead offers online exhibitions that celebrate girlhood in the past and present. Also offers educational guides, collaborative projects through social media, and a podcast series. Launched 2009.

Tucson Gay LGBT LGBTQ Queer Museum is an online-only museum that does not have a physical building and instead offers online exhibitions about LGBTQ history. The online photographic, audio, video, text, and other historical exhibitions include exhibits from the 1700s to the present day. The effort began in the summer of 1967 and spanned almost 50 years, a.

International New Media Gallery (INMG) is an online museum specializing in moving image and screen-based art. The INMG is dedicated to exploring current debates and topics in art history: touching on areas such as migration, war, environmental activism and the internet itself. The gallery publishes extensive academic catalogues alongside its exhibitions. It also hosts spaces for discussion and debate, both online and offline.

Google Art Project is an online compilation of high-resolution images of artworks from galleries worldwide, as well as a virtual tour of the galleries in which they are housed. The project was launched on 1 February 2011 by Google, and includes works in the Tate Gallery, London; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City; and the Uffizi, Florence.

USAF Police Online Museum & Memorial – The USAF Police Alumni Association operates the USAF Police Virtual Museum & Memorial.

Virtual Museum of Modern Nigerian Art — the VMMNA is the first of its kind in Africa. Hosted by the Pan-African University, Lagos, Nigeria this virtual museum offers a good view of the development on Nigerian Art in the past fifty years.

UK's Culture24 — online guide to public museums, galleries, libraries, archives, heritage sites and science centres in the United Kingdom.

Virtual Museum of Canada — Canada's national virtual museum. With over 2,500 Canadian museums, the VMC brings together Canada's museums regardless of size or geographical location.

Museum With No Frontiers — The Virtual Museum set up by MWNF was launched in 2005. It is a real museum, including a Collection, Exhibitions and a Database, and is the result of international cooperation between museums and cultural heritage organisations, based on the MWNF methodology.


So far, three thematic museums have been completed: Discover Islamic Art (www.discoverislamicart.org) (online since 2005, Database of 2,113 objects and monuments from 22 countries, 19 Virtual Exhibitions); Discover Baroque Art(www.discoverbaroqueart.org) (online since 2010, Database of 588 objects and monuments from 7 countries, 9 Virtual Exhibitions), and Sharing History (www.sharinghistory.org) (focusing on Arab-Ottoman-European relations between 1815 and 1918, online since 2015, Database of 2,636 objects and monuments from 22 countries, 10 Virtual Exhibitions).


Carnamah Historical Society — an Australian historical society whose Virtual Museum: to be known and distinguished as Carnamah won a Museums and Galleries National Award in 2014.

Virtual Museum of Soviet Repression in Belarus - The museum presents recordings of audio- and video-recollections of witnesses of Soviet repression in Belarus. The museum is operated by historians and other scientists from Belarus, based on a private initiative. It started collection of materials in 2007 and is operable since 2014.

Western Australian Museum — CyberMuseum using social media sites of Twitter and Facebook to tell the history of Perth, Western Australia, through photographs, videos and news feeds.

St George's Museum, founded in Walkley near Sheffield in 1875 by the Victorian art critic John Ruskin and later dispersed, has been recreated as a virtual museum by the "Ruskin at Walkley" project.

The Archive of Digital Art, founded in 1999, launched a Light Box tool in 2014, which is utilized a.o. for the display of historic media art exhibitions and collaborative curatorial concepts.

National Portal and Digital Repository for Museums of India is designed and developed by Human-Centred Design and Computing Group of Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC), India in collaboration and with funding support from Ministry of Culture, Government of India. The National Portal for Museums of India was formally launched on 21 October 2014.


The portal offers search & retrieval and integrated access to digitized collections of 10 national museums namely National Museum of India, New Delhi; Allahabad Museum, Allahabad; Indian Museum, Kolkata; National Gallery of Modern Arts (NGMA), New Delhi; National Gallery of Modern Arts (NGMA), Mumbai; National Gallery of Modern Arts (NGMA), Bengaluru; Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) Museum, Goa; Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) Museum, Nagarjunakonda; Salar Jung Museum, Hyderabad and Victoria Memorial Hall, Kolkata.


All participating museums are using JATAN: Virtual Museum Builder, a software developed by C-DAC for the purpose of standardization. The National Portal for Museums of India also won Special Mention Grand Jury Manthan Award in e-Culture, Heritage & Tourism category in 2015.

Internetmuseum – a Swedish digital museum opened in 2014. The ambition of the museum is to spread knowledge of the Swedish history of Internet and to preserve the digital heritage.









The ERDF aims to strengthen economic and social cohesion in the European Union by correcting imbalances between its regions.

The ERDF focuses its investments on several key priority areas. This is known as 'thematic concentration':

* Innovation and research;
* The digital agenda;
* Support for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs);
* The low-carbon economy.

The ERDF resources allocated to these priorities will depend on the category of region.

In more developed regions, at least 80 % of funds must focus on at least two of the above priorities. In transition regions, this focus is for 60 % of the funds and in developed regions the fund is 50%.


Some ERDF resources must be channeled specifically towards low-carbon economy projects:

* More developed regions: 20%;
* Transition regions: 15%; and
* Less developed regions: 12%.



NESTA digital R&D fund for arts and culture




The Digital R&D Fund for the Arts supported ideas that use digital technology to build new business models and enhance audience reach for organisations with arts projects.


Why did they do this?


The fund, a partnership between Nesta, the Arts Council England and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), encouraged collaboration between the arts, digital technology providers and the research community in order to undertake experiments from which the wider arts sector could learn.


What did they do?


£7million was made available for projects over the period 2012-2015 for projects up to a value of £125,000. Two new strands within the fund were introduced in 2013 to encourage applications around big data and research with funding up to £300,000.


The fund itself is now closed but you can access the free resources created as part of the programme of work from the timeline below, which includes a digital toolkit for the arts, research papers and a portal for exploring the results of the Digital Culture survey. The National Archives has also published an archive version of the website


The background


The Digital R&D Fund for the Arts in England followed a pilot exercise (The Digital Research & Development Fund for Arts and Culture) during 2011/12 between the Arts Council England, Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and Nesta to support arts and cultural organisations across England who wanted to work with digital technologies to:


* expand their audience reach and engagement and/or

* explore new business models


Each of the pilot projects was selected because they would produce research and data that other arts and cultural organisations would value highly and, possibly, develop new products/services that could be used by other organisations. A key element of the fund is the partnerships between arts and cultural organisations, technology providers and researchers.


We invited Dr Paul Gerhardt, of Archives for Creativity, to work with the pilot projects to compile brief case studies of each project, and to capture the main learning points. You can read a summary of his findings here, and the more detailed case studies via the links below.



CulturApp: Dickens London Trails 

Social Interpretation


Culture Cloud

Punchdrunk: Sleep No More








In partnership with Nesta and AHRC, the Artc Council funded 52 arts and culture organisations to collaborate with tech companies and researchers to explore new ways to reach audiences or generate income.


This is the fourth year of research tracking the changing uses and impact of technology among arts and cultural organisations.

The survey, delivered by MTM London, received responses from over 1,400 arts and cultural organisations on how they use digital technology to support their work, what impact it brings, and the barriers to and conditions necessary to achieve their digital aims.


You can also look at a Data Portal which has been specially designed to help you explore the results from Digital Culture survey in more depth.

This portal displays responses from 2017, along with data from the 2013, 2014 and 2015 studies. You can use the portal to focus on parts of the survey that interest you. For instance, you can find out how many galleries in London have used crowdfunding to raise funds for new projects.



FACTSHEETS - A number of fact sheets are available, analyzing the data by ACE art form and the National Portfolio Organisation cohort.


Combined Arts
Visual Arts
National Portfolio Organisations






For the 2014-2020 period, the ESF will focus on four of the cohesion policy's thematic objectives:

> promoting employment and supporting labour mobility
> promoting social inclusion and combating poverty
> investing in education, skills and lifelong learning
> enhancing institutional capacity and an efficient public administration

In addition, 20 % of ESF investments will be committed to activities improving social inclusion and combating poverty. This is known as thematic concentration.

To find out more: see the European Social Fund rules and the ESF website


Organisations receiving (ESF) or match funds must comply with the information and publicity regulatory requirements of the European Union (EU) and the England ESF programme.

Your publicity must include the activities explained in this section:

* use the ESF logo
* display project plaques
* inform participants about ESF and EU support
* spread the word – publicise project activity
* promote the national message
* meet your contractual requirements

The ESF investments cover all EU regions. More than € 80 billion is earmarked for human capital investment in Member States between 2014 and 2020, with an extra of at least € 3.2 billion allocated to the Youth Employment Initiative.





The United Kingdom is using ESF funding to reduce inactivity among young people and the long-term unemployed and to improve training and skills. It is also investing in education and lifelong learning, and is promoting social inclusion by fighting poverty and discrimination.

Across Europe and in the UK the ESF is supporting jobs, helping people get better jobs and ensuring fairer living standards and job opportunities for all EU citizens. It is doing this by investing in Europe’s human capital – its workers, its young people, disadvantaged groups and all those seeking a job. Tens of thousands of ESF projects are active in Europe’s cities, towns, rural communities and neighbourhoods. They are opening doors to skills, to work, to qualifications and to a more inclusive society for all Europeans.

During 2014-2020, the ESF and European Regional Development Fund are investing around €11.8 billion across the UK. The ESF share of €4.9 billion is funding six operational programmes in Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, England and Gibraltar, and includes €206 million for the Youth Employment Initiative (YEI).
Bridging the job gap

The ESF is funding projects to increase employment levels, in particular among young people and those facing obstacles to getting a job. Initiatives addressing the long-term unemployed, the economically inactive and those at risk of poverty and social exclusion include tackling barriers to entering and staying in work by providing skills training. Actions to get women into work include reskilling, retraining and initiatives to reduce the gender employment gap.
Working on inclusion

In line with the UK’s commitment to tackling poverty and welfare dependency through work, the ESF is focusing on disadvantaged groups, including disabled people, ethnic minorities, ex-offenders and women needing childcare provision. Projects are providing pre-employment training and help for disadvantaged groups, which is tailored to local needs. Skills training and support in the transition from unemployment into work are also benefitting those at risk of social exclusion. For example, in London’s Brixton Prison, the ESF-funded Bad Boys’ Bakery project is training inmates to become bakers and to find work when they are released.
Keeping up with change

To boost productivity, increase competitiveness and meet labour market needs, the ESF is promoting upskilling and reskilling to help those already in work. Young people, in particular, are gaining the intermediate and higher-level skills, qualifications, training and career advice they need to enter and stay in the labour market. Priorities also include training for the unemployed and disadvantaged groups, improving links between education and work, more support for apprenticeships and traineeships, and equipping students, graduates and young people with the skills to start and grow a business.



Herstmonceux Science Museum  -  http://www.electricity-guide.org.uk/providers/seeboard-energy.html



ANTIQUE DOCUMENT - This is an amazingly rare find, a document dated from February of 1911. These are one of a series of instructions to the engineers who were operating the generating machinery in Lime Park. You may notice that in addition to generating electricity for the village that plant was in situ for making ice. Luxury indeed in 1911.






The Network for Social Change is a group of individuals providing funding for progressive social change, particularly in the areas of justice, peace and the environment. Together we give well over £1 million a year to a variety of projects and organisations. About 90% of this is through our charity Network for Social Change Charitable Trust, with the rest through our non-charity, Funding for Social Change Limited.

Network For Social Change
BM 2063




Herstmonceux Science Museum in East Sussex, Observatory, Lime Park



MONUMENT AT RISK - The main generating buildings when in need a new roof and other repairs. The felt roof was a temporary measure to prevent water ingress where privately owned historic buildings are not considered to be important enough to warrant help from the Heritage Lottery Fund or Historic England.









Tour The American Museum of Natural History

The American Museum of Photography Guided Tour

American Red Cross Virtual Museum

American Treasures - Library of Congress

Tour an Ancient Roman Villa

Tour of The Andy Warhol Museum

The Canadian Museum of Civilization

Tour The Catherine Palace of Tsarskoye Selo

Tour The Collection at The National Gallery of Art

Tour the DeCordova 35 acre Sculpture Park

The Drop Zone Virtual Museum (WW II Airborne)

Virtual Tour of Durham Cathedral

Tour the Field Museum of Natural History Exhibits

Institute and Museum of History of Science - Florence, Italy

German Leather Museum

Greek and Roman Art Collection

Holocaust Museum Tour

The International Museum of Horses

Tour The Jimmy Stewart Museum

Museum of HP Calculators

Tour The Museum of Unnatural Mystery

Tour the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Tour Historic Mount Vernon The Home of George Washington

Tour The National Museum of Women in the Arts

Tour the Natural History Museum in London

Tour the Olympic Museum

Tour the Orchard House/Home of the Alcotts

Tour the U.C. Berkeley Museum of Paleontology

Tour the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame + Museum

Tour the Samurai Asian Museum

Tour the International Surfing Museum

Tour the Virtual Egyptian Museum

Tour the Smithsonian - The World's Largest Museum

Toyota Automobile Museum in Tokyo

Ueberseemuseum in Bremen, Germany (In German)

Tour Williamsburg and You'll Tour Through the Pages of Colonial America.

Tour World Art Treasures

























VIRTUAL REALITIES LLC - Since 1992, Virtual Realities, LLC. has been one of the world’s leading distributor of 3D peripheral products, input/output devices, bundled software, and integrated systems to the educational, industrial, entertainment, and military markets. In addition to selling their own product line of head mounted displays and motion tracking systems, they are also a leading reseller of many other display and tracking products. Their goal is to provide customers with integrated turnkey solutions that deal with Professional Virtual Reality applications.







VIRTALIS 3D VR -  Virtalis produce a powerful immersive 3D VR software: Visionary Render, that has been designed by their experienced team as a tool solely with the 3D environment in mind. It enables CAD users to easily transfer source data from multiple CAD packages into an immersive 3D visualisation experience. Similarly Visionary Render’s sibling VR software VR4CAD speedily transforms CAD models into full 3D VR and can save viewpoints, annotations and snapshots. Billed as the Gateway to Pro VR, VR4CAD is out-of-the-box VR software. It works with an impressive list of CAD packages and is an affordable option for CAD users looking to dip their toes into the world of Virtual Reality.


The software options range from model creation tools to virtual world creators. Virtalis use these software packages themselves and each has a “champion” within Virtalis who can both extol its virtues and explain its limitations. Their team can advise you on the best software or combination of software for your purposes. In many instances, we can also provide some evaluation software.





Turbosquid digital media computer models in 3D



3D MODELS OFF THE SHELF - TurboSquid is a digital media company that sells stock 3D models used in 3D graphics to a variety of industries, including computer games, architecture, and interactive training. The company, headquartered in New Orleans, Louisiana in the United States, is most known for brokering the sale of 3D models in return for a percentage of the sales. As of 2014, TurboSquid had over 550,000 3D models in its library, making it the largest library of 3D models for sale in the world. Turbosquid also has over 130,000 other products available, such as texture maps, most at affordable prices for developers.











VIRTUAL INTEREST - There are hundreds of museums that are going over to virtual tours and we are one of them. There are companies out there that can turn your vision into a reality, virtually of course. Some of them are on this page.



































GOOGLE MAPS - The detail is not that great and the situation on the land is significantly improved in that the site has undergone a massive clean up to remove the build up of flora. You can though see the brick walls indicative of the extent of the foundation layout to the rear (north-east) of the main generating buildings. The walls have been partly repaired and a smaller part of the footprint covered with decking and water goods to protect the archaeological features. The eventual objective is to restore the section that was taken down completely.






RED SKY - Red sky at night, shepherds delight. This stunning sunset was taken one balmy evening in Herstmonceux, Sussex as the sun went down. We tend to take these glorious views for granted, when they are spectacular and sometimes take your breath away from the sheer beauty. Copyright © photograph June 30 2017. You will need the permission of Lime Park Heritage Trust to use this picture. All rights reserved.




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