“I find the property fascinating, even though I am not interested in the technical side of photography. I enjoy meeting the public, giving them a good experience and the camaraderie of the volunteers and staff. I’m constantly learning and sharing information!” - Rosaleen, volunteer since September 2004.Many of our volunteers have been with us since the house first opened its doors, with some getting involved even earlier, at the renovation stage in 2002. We have new recruits joining every year, each with their own skill sets and interests, ensuring that the house is in safe hands.
|Mathew and Thomas carefully moving some of our picnic flasks to be photographed|
“I’ve fancied participating in showing off and helping conserve historic properties for a long time – I particularly like this ‘city’ property. I started room guiding in the open season, and in the closed season, I’ve enjoyed the inventory marking, conservation cleaning and magazine archiving – all good!” - Mike, volunteer since 2010.
“I have a lifelong interest in photography, so am familiar with much of the older aspects. I also spent two periods as an instructor whilst in the Police, so enjoy engaging with visitors in an informative and entertaining way.” - Alex, volunteer since September 2004.We all have different reasons for volunteering. As one of the younger members of the team, I’m on my gap year before starting university in September. Having practically been brought up in National Trust houses, I decided volunteering for one would be a great way to spend my time this year, developing new skills as well as my interest in photography. As for some of our other volunteers…
|Mathew checking his handy work in our temporary inventory photography studio|
“I decided to become a volunteer at the Hardmans’ House to contribute to the Trust’s efforts to preserve the building and also to meet new people.” - Hannah, volunteer since March 2015.
“I’m a long standing National Trust member, and since starting my retirement, I wanted to give my free time to an organisation involved with conservation, buildings and the general public.”
“Meeting the visitors on the tours – they often have contributions to make. Chatting with other volunteers is enjoyable. I can pick their brains about photographic techniques – many are much more experienced than I am!” - Jen, volunteer since 2011.
“The volunteer atmosphere is very friendly and warm.” - Alan, volunteer since June 2014.
“I like the flexibility of working here, and I just enjoy the opportunity to give something back. I hope to provide some added value to the work of the National Trust.” - Jane.
“I enjoy meeting people, and working from my interest in photography and conservation. For example, when photographing the toys recently, I was fascinated by the size of the collection.”- Roy.And finally, what advice would our current volunteers give to any possible new recruits?
|Roy cleaning the fragile 'Noah's Ark' plastic toy|
“TRY IT! There’s plenty of support and friendship.” – Rosaleen.
“Communicate with fellow volunteers. Don’t be shy, ask others if you’re unsure of anything.”
“Learn the ‘basics’ of each room, then keep reading, and learning, and listening to the longer serving volunteers. Always show enthusiasm for the subject, and try to involve/engage every visitor in the group.” – Alex.
“There are lots of tasks besides guiding. You are sure to find something you enjoy.” – Monica.
If meeting some of our current volunteers has made volunteering for the Hardmans’ House sound like something you’d love to get involved with, then please get in touch! You can apply all year round, but please be aware, our room guides only work during our open season between March and the end of October. Conservation work however, has to be done all year round!
If you’d like a registration form or to find out more information, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 0151 709 6261.
Winter Conservation Volunteer
The Hardmans' House