Pokémon Go players across Blackburn are rediscovering the history of the town whilst capturing virtual characters who have taken the gaming world by storm.
Hundreds of real-life memorials, plaques, statues and landmarks in Blackburn have been turned into PokéStops in the popular game including the William Henry Hornby Statue, Blackburn Masonic Hall and the Cotton Plant Sculpture on Church Street.
Many of the games PokéStops and Pokémon gyms are based on a website that tracks the coordinates of historical markers.
In order to catch a Pokémon, gamers must throw a Pokéball at it in an attempt to add it to their collection.
Pokémon Go user, Steven Bourke, has reached level 23 on the game. He said: “Whilst using the app I’ve discovered the historical significance behind multiple monuments dotted across the town centre which is something I’ve never looked into previously. I’m definitely more aware of my surroundings as a result of using Pokémon Go.”
The smartphone game, which lets you hunt Pokémon creatures in real life has taken the world by storm and dominated download charts in the US and UK.
Lewis Drever, who has reached level 22 on the app created by Niantic said the game has allowed him to familiarise himself with different locations and businesses around the town centre.
“When I visited Blackburn previously I would spend most of my time looking around the shopping centre. Pokémon Go has enabled me to discover the more independent businesses and monuments on the outskirts. It’s also created a buzz across the town centre during the evening especially around Blackburn Town Hall and Northgate.”
There a number of PokéStops and gyms across the Blackburn BID area including:
Blackburn Museum, Mall Glass Clock Tower, Postal Order, Blackburn Market, King Georges Hall, Blackburn Ice Arena, Sir Charles Napier, Blackburn Cathedral and Blackburn Train Station.