Modern technology giving town’s history a new life

Market Rasen Heritage Tour Launch
Market Rasen Heritage Tour Launch

History will come alive as a lottery funded interactive virtual heritage tour of Market Rasen goes live this weekend.

Market Rasen residents and visitors now have a new way to discover local history in the form of an exciting new website and 10 real-life signs in place around town.

The website, which will be officially launched on Saturday December 7 is the result of a successful joint bid for an ‘All Our Stories Grant from The Heritage Lottery Fund, made by the Market Rasen Business Improvement Group (MR BIG) and Rase Heritage Society.

Sara Scott from MR BIG said: “The website opens up with an interactive map of old Market Rasen, with 10 small Victorian top hats marking the pin location of the 10 stories.

“You can scroll the map in any direction and zoom in or out, just like on Google Maps. Clicking on a hat gives you a preview of that story, so you can decide if you want to read that, or try another.

“There is also a sliding set of photos on the pages to give another way to browse the stories, and the slider images are presented in the order of a suggested route around town, starting at St Thomas’ church, and doing a full loop to return to the market place.”

At the MR BIG Market on Saturday, December 7, Hazel Barnard from Rase Heritage Society will be undertaking two tours to highlight the routes, these will take place at 11.00am and 2.00pm starting from St Thomas Church by the Market Place, no need to book.

Highlights of the website include local historian Brian Ward giving a potted history of the railway station and reminiscences of retired town GP Dr Parry.

There is also a comic audio story set inside The Old Magistrates’ court in 1853 and a dramatic retelling of the bloody murder of Reverend Storr in 1602.

Visitors can also view two new woodcut style illustrations relating to the murder of William Storr in 1602 and an interactive, panoramic image taken from St Thomas’ Church tower this year, that pans from The Old Mill on George Street right round to King Street.

Crucially, the website has been coded to work on smartphones and tablets, as well as standard desktop computers, so it can be accessed in the street as you take the tour by foot. QR codes on the street signs make the foot tour even easier, as one quick scan with your smartphone’s QR reader takes you straight to the story page online.

All six videos on the site are hosted on their own YouTube channel, and can be viewed full screen at

The new Market Rasen Heritage Tour website can be found at

What stories will you find on the new site?

The site centres on 10 historic stories, voted for by readers of The Market Rasen Mail from a list of 20.

The stories on the new website range from medieval through to Tudor through to 21st century.

They have been researched and written by members of Rase Heritage Society, and include work by:

•Hazel Barnard: The Magistrates Court, Dr John Conolly and The Murder of Rev Storr

•Brenda Overton: The Market Place and Two Corn Exchanges

•Brian Ward: The Railways and Market Rasen Races & Pubs

•Mal Jones: St Thomas’ Church and Tennysons

•Caroline Foster: The Cottage Hospital

The website tells these stories through an exciting mix of six videos and around 70 images, which include archive and newly commissioned pieces.

Hazel Barnard said: “This has been a great opportunity for Rase Heritage Society to delve into archives, photographs and family histories to find Market Rasen’s past stories. We hope that visitors and residents alike enjoy their trips into our past.”