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Saturday, 20 December 2014

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Hologram to take Wordsworth House visitors on journey through time

There's a spine-tingling new maid at Cockermouth’s Wordsworth House.

Wordsworth House photo
Ruth Akers prepares for her role as Amy

Staff at the popular house have spent the winter preparing Amy the hologram for her role showing people 18th-century life below stairs.

And she will be unveiled next month when the house reopens for its new season.

Visitors to the cellar may recognise Amy as the ghostly presence of Ruth Akers, star of ITV’s Inside the National Trust, who helped put presenter Michael Buerk through his paces as a trainee Georgian manservant.

Speaking about filming for the ITV series which finishes this weekend, Ruth said: “Filming was a lot of fun, but I didn’t realise exactly how much standing completely still it would involve or how many takes.

“It made me feel better when our producer told me that in Some Like it Hot, Marilyn Monroe took 37 takes to open a door. I’m really pleased with the results and I hope visitors find Amy as fun to watch as we did to create.”

Amy the hologram will make her first appearance on March 9, when the house opens. Other new features include guided tours by volunteers and a new audio tour, offering fresh insights into the people who made the house their home.

Manager Zoe Gilbert said: “Amy took us a bit of planning, but she’s been worth it. She’s certainly lifelike, and may give people a shock as she is a bit ghostly.

“We wanted to offer people a little cameo to help them empathise with the life of the maid and the house.

“She’ll even give you some cookery tips – it’s very useful to know how to whisk your syllabub so you don’t invoke the devil.”

The 2013 season was a successful year for Wordsworth House and Garden, as it starred in the ITV series.

The stars of the show included costumed servant Ruth, interpretation and communications manager Alex Morgan, gardener Amanda Thackeray and Fletch the perchcrow.

“Wordsworth House and Garden is constantly evolving, so we’re really pleased to be able to offer audio tours, volunteer-led tours, conservation cleaning demos, and exciting new explorer bags for our family visitors this year. It’s been a busy winter and now we can’t wait for the doors to open,” added Zoe.

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