Bradford's trend-setting VR City supports NHS staff – Telegraph and Argus
A VIRTUAL reality centre in Bradford said it wants to be more than just a leisure venue after NHS staff used its facilities for training last week.
Physiotherapists have visited VR City on North Parade, using its technology to learn more about how virtual reality can support patients.
Hasan Khan, owner of the business, said it has gone from strength to strength since opening in September last year.
“VR City is something that you can’t get anywhere else in Bradford,” said Hasan, 33.
“The physio team used our tech because they want to use VR to help people.
“That’s something we want to do, as well – we want communities to be able to use us.”
Earlier this month, VR City won New Business of the Year at the Telegraph & Argus Retail, Leisure and Hospitality awards. Hasan and co-founder – his brother Zeeshan, 31 – were inspired to start the business after a visit to the other side of the world – as well as by some issues closer to home.
“I went to Japan a few years ago, and I saw their tech, which was 20 years in advance of ours,” said Hasan.
“It was inspiring. At the same time, I also saw how Bradford was crying out for more leisure. We only had basic stuff like bowling.
“We want there to be a culture of leisure in the city centre. Since VR City, we’ve also opened Looney Golf in the same building, and GG Gaming has also opened recently.
“My brother and I have aligned our passions with our jobs.”
Despite the success, Hasan said that the roadworks on North Parade have been an issue.
“We do struggle to get footfall – the top of town is dead, it’s impacting the area massively,” he said.
“We want Bradford to be busy, and we’ll do whatever it takes to get people coming in.”
In response, Bradford Council said it was investing heavily in North Parade to improve the area.
A spokesperson added: “We have been working with local businesses to reduce disruption, including fast-tracking work prior to Christmas and keeping all entries to businesses open and unrestricted.
“The Council holds regular stakeholder meetings with the North Parade businesses and this issue hasn’t been raised in these, however, we are always willing to listen to any suggestions which could improve the scheme.
“We are confident the wider scheme will benefit all the local businesses and create high quality public spaces everyone will want to enjoy.”
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