Volunteering Opportunities: July 2017

Railway volunteers meet HRH

For the heritage centre site to achieve its full potential we need new volunteers to join our team.

Most of these roles are not strenuous and do not require physical activity so would suit people of any ability. In all cases volunteers must be over 18 although younger persons are welcome to volunteer but must be accompanied by a parent or responsible adult. For example, a father and son combination would be fantastic for the stone mason demonstrations. In the late 19th century boys as young as 9 would have brought stone in the tub wagons for the stone mason to work. Equally a young person and parent or grand parent operating the garden railway would be a good combination.

Railway Museum, Exhibition Building and Quarry Heritage Area Warden/Guide

Since we opened the Railway Museum and Quarry Heritage Building at Easter we have volunteer guides around the site to open the museum in the morning, answer visitors questions and close up at the end of the day. Ideally we need volunteers in this role 7 days a week but at present we only have sufficient volunteers to cover a couple of days. Volunteers in this role would need to be personable and enjoy meeting and chatting to the public. No prior experience is necessary as training is provided. We operate an on-line rota system with two sessions per day 10:00 to 1:30, and 1:30 to 5pm, with, preferably, two volunteers for each session.

Some of our Eco Volunteers

Some of our Eco volunteers meet HRH Prince Charles

Nature Trail, Den building and High level viewing area

We are always on the lookout for volunteers to help maintain these areas. An interest in nature and some gardening skills would be an advantage. Our eco teams generally help out Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday morning.

Garden Railway

We run the railway on Saturdays and Sundays from 10:30 until 4:30, and hopefully (volunteer numbers and weather permitting) weekdays through the summer school holidays starting on Monday July 17th. The role includes running the model trains and taking the £1 fee from visitors wishing to drive a “loco” for themselves. No previous experience of operating model railways is necessary, training will be given on changing and recharging batteries and the other little tasks required to keep the railway running. We currently operate three two hour shifts (10:30 to 12:30, 12:30 to 2:30 and 2:30 to 4:30) again booked via an on-line rota system.

Shunting Demonstrations

This role requires a degree of strength and physical fitness. Demonstrations would tend to take place at weekends, and occasional days during the summer holidays. We need reasonably able-bodied volunteers wishing to be trained as “shunters” to work the points and couple/decouple wagons.

Stonemason Demonstrations

We are looking for volunteers to play the part of a Victorian stone mason. They would have spent their day sitting in their stone mason’s hut dressing stone into road cobbles, kerbs and the other items that the quarry used to make. Our volunteers won’t actually work the stone but they’ll be able to explain to visitors how the process would have worked, where to look for faults in the stone and how the stones would have been hit to split them. We have many examples of the finished products to show visitors. Again, no prior experience is necessary as full training will be given. Prospective volunteers for this role would need to enjoy meeting and talking to the public. It is hoped to be able to run demonstrations at weekends and on weekdays through the summer holiday.

If you are interested in any of the opportunities, or know anyone who may be, then please get in touch using the form below. We would love to hear from you.

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