Volunteering at Bristol Old Vic

6 Sep 2018

For the first time in its history, Bristol Old Vic is developing a full-scale volunteer programme! Coming as part of the larger heritage project launching to the public on the 10th November, volunteers will be an essential part of making sure that our heritage offer is accessible and Our heritage offer has developed so fast over the past year, and with the new building coming alongside that, there has never been a more exciting time for this legendary theatre.

To help us bring our heritage content to life, we need a great range of volunteers that have a variety of skills, but the most important thing is the right attitude. If you’re a friendly, excitable person that wants to join in with the newest heritage site Bristol has to offer, then why not get involved? Volunteering has a number of proven benefits for improving quality of life; from making new friends to adding extra experience to your CV, to just generally being an awesome way to spend your time!

As a volunteer at Bristol Old Vic, your role will be to add context and extra value to our heritage offer (launching to the public the weekend of the 10th November). This includes welcoming people into the building, answering questions, and providing information on our new historic interpretation. You can also help us to evaluate how our new heritage project is going, or assist Bristol Old Vic’s tour guides on our new and improved twice weekly theatre tours!

And there are other perks too! Volunteers will get the same benefits as Bristol Old Vic staff, including complimentary tickets to shows, and a 20% discount on food and drinks* in the swanky new 1766 café bar. So not only do you get satisfaction of working in the longest continuously working theatre in the UK, but extra goodies to boot!

So here it is, the call to action! This Saturday, the 8th September, we’ll be hosting our very first volunteer open day here at Bristol Old Vic for anyone interested in becoming a volunteer to come along and learn about the new building and the heritage project, ask questions, and sign up on the day if you’re interested. No experience is necessary, no qualifications are needed, no applications expected. Just come in and take a look at what we will have to offer when the project launches in November, and have a chat with us.

Ideally we’d be looking for volunteers to give up a few hours of their time per week for one of our four hour shifts, but we will try to be flexible in your commitments. There are also a variety of different roles for volunteers, so take a look below, and see which role is the right one for you. Bear in mind, these roles are subject to change.

Photo courtesy of Bristol Museum and Art Gallery

Welcome Stewards

Welcome Stewards help to provide a wonderful welcome to our brand new foyer space, helping members of the public orient themselves around the site and get the most out of our new heritage interpretation. You will most likely be the first point of contact for members of the public, and so being a friendly and approachable person is absolutely necessary.

Interpretation Stewards

Interpretation Stewards are based in and around some of the areas where major sections of the heritage interpretation can be found, such as Noises Off and the Bristol Old Vic timeline and exhibition spaces. Their job is to help the public understand the new interpretation and provide assistance in understanding it. If stationed by the exhibition area, you will also be responsible for keeping the area clean, and making sure that our exhibition cabinets are kept looking brand new! Interpretation Stewards will also be called on to help assist the guided tours of the theatre.

Digitisation Volunteers

Working in conjunction with Bristol Archives and the University of Bristol Theatre Collection, Digitisation Volunteers will help to upload and manage the digital content that has been digitised by the Theatre Collection. This will contribute to our evolving digital archive interface that is found in the pit level by the exhibition. This is a great opportunity for anyone interested in gaining experience working with archive collections and digital material.

Event Volunteers

Event Volunteers help out with various heritage events we might be putting on. This could be doing everything from helping take tickets for events, to stewarding people and helping them find their seats. This position unsurprisingly may involve evening and weekend work.

So if any of those roles sound interesting to you, then come along to the volunteer open day on Saturday 8th September and talk to us about how you could volunteer for Bristol Old Vic, and be an essential part of this new era for the theatre. 

Want more information? Got some questions? Then head to our website for more information: https://bristololdvic.org.uk/whats-on/volunteer-open-day or send an email my way: volunteering@bristololdvic.org.uk

Liam Wiseman, Heritage Engagement Manager

*Volunteers will only get access to free tickets and discounts after working three shifts.