VIDEO: Yorkshire pit tour in virtual reality gets world premiere in Scarborough

Battling monsters on alien planets, slaying dragons in fantasy worlds and shooting up the bad guys in high speed car chases may account for huge global sales of immersive virtual reality computer game headsets.

But the most amazing holographic style 360-degree experience I've ever seen is something much closer to home.

Artist and VR expert Iain Nicholls has teamed up with famed Yorkshire poet Ian McMillan to produce a virtual reality 1904 Coal Mine Experience.

And you can be one of the first to try it try it out for yourself when it gets its world premiere tomorrow and Saturday at The Scarborough News backed Exploring Digital Futures conference at the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough. For more information CLICK HERE.

VIDEO: Watch our exclusive video report above or by putting your mobile device over the image accompanying the story in this week's edition of The Scarborough News - out Thursday, May 25, 2017 - while using the free augmented reality Aursma app in its camera mode and watch the page come to life. For help - CLICK HERE.

MEET THE SCARBOROUGH NEWS: Come talk to us at the conference throughout today - Friday, May 26, 2017, 9am to 5pm - about how we are using Aurasma to bring news, sport, features and adverts to life. We will help show you how to do it and, if you have a business, what we can do for you. Editor Ed Asquith and our digital expert Graham Walker will be available 12.30pm to 1.15pm.

Bard of Barnsley poet Ian McMillan narrates the virtual reality pit tour

Bard of Barnsley poet Ian McMillan narrates the virtual reality pit tour

The 1904 Coal Mine Experience - created by Iain Nicholls - takes virtual reality to another level.

Pop on the HTC Vive VR, take the controllers in hand and you are transported back in time more than 100-years to a small community coal mine, like ones that sprung up in towns and villages all over the county but have now closed and disappeared, many without a trace.

This interactive experience, funded by the Dearne Valley Landscape Partnership, brings Yorkshire's rich coal heritage vividly back to life as you explore a 1904 working mine, starting on the pit top, wth birds flying over its outbuildings and its iconic, towering, winding wheel.

Step into the pit cage - the lift that plunged miners down the coal shaft - and you are in the inky darkness, where one of your controllers magically turns into a flickering miner's lamp, giving just enough light to illuminate your way to the coal face, where you can pick on coal, fossils as you side-step barrows, a pick axe and a shovel.

The virtual reality coal mine tour brings back to life Yorkshire's former Hemingfield Colliery which is under restoration near Barnsley.

The virtual reality coal mine tour brings back to life Yorkshire's former Hemingfield Colliery which is under restoration near Barnsley.

Artist Iain explained: "It's like a video game and a film, but it's much more immersive. It feels like you are there.

"This is a real time virtual reality experience of what it would be like to go down a turn of the century coal mine, based on Hemingfield Colliery, which is being restored near where I live in Barnsley."

Ian McMillan said: "This is an amazing project and I'm really excited to be part of it because it's like stepping into somebody's head. Its like simultaneously stepping into the past and the future...and into somebody's imagination.

"My job was to write a little narrative that is going to accompany you through the pit. Listening to my voice just explaining, being a little it poetic and also helping you to feel not too lonely - because when you are down this pit, just with your Davy lamp, you might feel like you are on your own. But you;re not. I'm beside you."

Virtual reality developer and artist Iain Nicholls

Virtual reality developer and artist Iain Nicholls