Seashell proudly celebrates its bicentenary in 2023, which has sparked a project with PrintCity to transform the marble busts of founders, William Bateman and Robert Philips into lifelike ‘paintings’.

As part of Seashell’s bicentenary, Trustee, Ed Baines is producing a book that will showcase the journey of Seashell, from a Charity for Deaf Children, to the Trust we know today.

Through his research, Ed has uncovered extraordinary details, from professionals travelling to the school from America, to visits from Queen Victoria. However he soon realised there was a missed opportunity to include images of our founders, William Bateman and Robert Philips. Their marble busts are displayed in Seashell’s boardroom, but no paintings are to be found in the historical archives.

With the help of modern technology and some very generous people at Manchester Metropolitan University, we were able to bring our founders to life. William and Robert’s marble busts took a trip to PrintCity, a digital manufacturing facility based at MMU. The facility has a range of technologies available, including 3D Printers, 3D Scanning and Subtractive Manufacturing equipment. The services are typically available to students, academics, companies and local communities.

 Mark Chester, Product Development Specialist supported Seashell with this project and said:

“When the opportunity arose to collaborate with Seashell, we knew it was a project we needed to support. We 3D scanned the two busts using structured light scanning technology. This enabled us to create a lifelike 3D model of the founder’s faces which were later coloured using 3D modelling software. Enabling Seashell to get a better idea of what the founders looked like and honour everything they setup so many years ago.”

Typically our facility is always looking forwards to the future, however, it’s also important to look back combining new and old together

Mark Chester
Print City Product Development Specialist