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Get a firsthand look at the halls and classrooms of Blackpool's Highfield Leadership Academy

Blue Monday gives prospective students an interactive tour of their future school

Highfield Leadership Academy is a co-educational secondary school in England and is a part of a family of institutions hosted under the Star Academies' name.

For prospective students, a tour is an essential piece of exploring the school’s vibrant community. And, for their families, it's equally as important to get a sense of the classrooms that could become a second home to their children for the next six years of their education. However, due to travel concerns and geographic restrictions, it was difficult to see how that highly personal experience could possibly be replicated through video calls or static photographs.

Rory Barber

That's when Birmingham film and video production company, Blue Monday, came into the picture. With just over 700 scans captured in under six hours, they created an interactive tour for prospective students and their families to explore the halls, labs, and classrooms of Highfield Leadership Academy — all from the comfort of home. 

Rory Barber, producer at Blue Monday, brought the idea to his clients at Star Academies to test it before expanding to their 52 schools in the UK. “We wanted to help them give potential students and families the chance to see how unique and creative their learning spaces are. It’s essential for the Academy to show off the classrooms and spaces a parent could potentially be sending their children for the next six years. Pictures are all well and good, but to actually have the experience of walking around and seeing the scale is unbeatable.”

Highfield tech

As far as must-sees, Rory thinks the technology rooms are great spaces to show potential students a wider range of activities. He enjoyed scanning the art spaces because it added loads of color in the tour. “If you look closely, there's a hidden surprise in one of the rooms, but we’re not going to give it away that easily.”


Rory says parents have found the Matterport 3D tour invaluable. Students can get their bearings before attending the school and teachers have an extra resource at their disposal. “How else can the viewer have the opportunity to visit the spaces in their own time, at their own pace, and see what they really want to see?”


United Kingdom
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