The CityVerve Manchester Plinth project addresses the themes below:

4. The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and connectivity
5. Virtual reality and augmented reality

1. CityVerve: Iot, Augmented Reality, Space and Culture: The Manchester Plinth

CityVerve demonstrated IoT projects reflecting complex uses and cultural adoption challenges for smart technologies including smart buildings, lower carbon travel and new cultural platforms.

Led by Prof Tom Jefferies a team of academics, architects, software developers, digital creatives, fabricators and curators designed the ‘Manchester Plinth’, a real space to experience high definition augmented reality content. 1000+ proof of concept engagements connected real and virtual space, presenting ‘lost’ cultural artefacts at sites across Manchester. The Manchester Plinth has been presented internationally, to UK Government Ministers, and at No.10 Downing Street during London Tech Week in June 2018.

2. The Manchester plinth emerged from an All School Project undertaken in September 2016 by Manchester School of Architecture with 750 academics, post graduate and undergraduate students. The project moved from a 1 week long wide ranging (49 proposals) scoping exercise towards delivery of a single proposal undertaken by an interdisciplinary team.

The Manchester Plinth was identified as suitable for realisation through a 10 week analysis and design workshop between October and December 2016 with 3 academics and 16 postgraduate students.

The final Manchester Plinth design team involved 1 lead academic, 1 research assistant, 1 business manager, 2 postgraduate students, 2 curators, 2 fabricators, a team of software developers, 1 digital creative (animator) between January and June 2017.

The project has had over 1000 proof of concept engagements in Manchester, London, other UK sites, Istanbul and been presented in the USA and Australia to governmental, cultural, technical and academic audiences.

3. Developing the project further is currently under discussion with cultural and commercial organisations, including Manchester City Council and the Arts Council England.

Project Details


Tom Jefferies (with Jane Anderson research associate)


Tom Jefferies


Digital Plinth


Manchester (8 sites), London: No 10 Downing Street


Innovate UK

Project Start Date

July 2016

Project End Date

June 2018




Innovate UK


Cisco, Sparta Digital


Penny Black Studios


Gary Hancock


Manchester City Council, Manchester City Art Gallery, Manchester Town Hall, Cosgrove Hall, Malcolm Garrett

Area (m2)



MMU Special Collections, Waterside Gallery Sale


Gary Hancock

Research Outputs

Conference Papers

Jefferies, T., Anderson, J., 2017. 'City Verve Internet of Things Demonstrator: City Verve Commissions: Manchester's Plinth', Electronic Visualisation and the Arts (EVA 2017), London, 11/7/2017 - 13/7/2017, pp. 264-270.

Project Staff