BBC Learning Development

GPS 'Norman' Tours by Thomas Grace


Long car journeys will never be the same again! Sit back and let BBC Learning inform and entertain you and your family using your satnav device to deliver location-based content on a Norman theme.

There will be two FREE tours available to download from early July - one from London to Salford and the other from Salford to London.

These interactive audio tours have been written by Terry Deary (of Horrible Histories) and characterized by Simon Callow and Terry Deary.

The inhabitants of Norman England were very keen on pilgrimages and journeys. To help keep the journeys from becoming unbearable, many travelling groups took on a guide. ‘Tours by Thomas Grace’ draws on this tradition.

Author Terry Deary and Producer Jo Claessens


If you are able to help Learning Development evaluate either of these tours please email us at: learningdevelopment@bbc.co.uk.

How do our GPS tours work?

The Global Positioning System (GPS) is the only global navigation satellite system (GNSS) in operation. It was developed by the US military and now operated by the US Air force.

The GPS locks into an in-car satnav receiver locating its position on the surface of the earth. Its position is laid over a standard road map which accurately reveals the drivers location to within 10m. Most satnavs have built-in software which can i) decide on the easiest route between any two given points on the map, give spoken word directions and alert passengers to places of interest.

This project uses ‘place of interest markers’ to trigger our interactive audio content automatically during the journey. It is hands free and doesn’t require any input from the driver during the journey. This functionality is common to all the main in-car satnav devices including Garmin, Tom Tom and Navman.

In the future, tours may be made available on low cost SD cards or via download. the trial will be evaluated by BBC Learning Development and BBC Learning Campaigns who are joint parters in the project.

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