Avoncroft Museum of Historic Buildings in Bromsgrove is currently recruiting volunteers who can help bring the past to life as part of a major initiative to engage and inspire visitors to the museum.  This is a great opportunity for anyone who has a few hours to spare, an interest in history and would like to develop skills and confidence in the museum and heritage sectors.  Please contact Julia Morris on volunteer@avoncroft.org.uk for more details.

A project funded by the Arts Council England, “Animating Worcestershire’s Museums”, will breathe new life into museum collections across the county with costumed guides and specialist volunteer teams for the Museum’s iconic windmill and the National Telephone Kiosk Collection.

Volunteer guides will dress in historically accurate costumes and will be given training on how to bring the stories behind the museums’ collections to life with interaction with visitors and historical re-enactments.  They will get the chance to learn more about the Museum’s collections, develop new skills and meet new people.

There are also opportunities for volunteers to join the specialist teams that maintain and operate Avoncroft’s iconic 19th century windmill and to staff the UK’s National Telephone Kiosk Collection, also based at the Museum.

No prior knowledge is required but volunteers need to have enthusiasm, commitment and a genuine interest in history.  The museum has many fascinating stories to tell about its collections and volunteers will need to enjoy dealing with people.

New volunteers will have the chance to work alongside current volunteers and costumed demonstrators.  They will receive preparatory and “on the job” training to help them develop the skills and confidence they need.

The positions are voluntary but travel expenses are offered.  Costumes, equipment and supplies for the re-enactments will be provided.

Museum director, Simon Carter, said: “We are thrilled to be a key partner in bringing our county’s history to life.  Our visitors tell us how much they enjoy talking knowledgeable people and this project gives us a fantastic opportunity to have costumed interpreters in our buildings more often.”

Peter Knott, Area Director for Arts Council England, said: “Investing in museums is important if we are to make the most of our country’s heritage and the rich cultural offer it presents.”

For more information, please contact Julia Morris on volunteer@avoncroft.org.uk or 01527 831363 (Wednesdays and Thursdays).