Derby Museums


Welcome to our Volunteer Opportunities page! 

Here at the Derby Museums, we believe that the most meaningful partnerships are built upon active involvement, shared values and fun.  We are thrilled you’d like to join our team, it’s an exciting time to get involved and we hope you’ll feel as inspired as we are as you learn more about our projects and take your first steps to become part of the Derby Museums community. 

Please take a look at the opportunities and if anything appeals, please fill in our online application form. 

Most site Tours and Inductions for these opportunities are shared in the "Getting Started" section further below. Although some opportunities might have their own specific requirements and these will be specified within the role. 

Do also browse our "Co-production" section to have a look at opportunities open to everyone who wants to feed into our events, programmes and activities. 

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VOLUNTEERING OPPORTUNITIES

Hogarth Tale teller

The big idea - Hogarth and the Jacobite Rebellion

The Derby Museum and Art Gallery exhibition will bring together around 60 objects from 13 collections, including loans from the National Portrait Gallery, The Foundling Museum and the National Galleries of Scotland. It will include pieces such as The March of the Guards to Finchley (The Foundling Museum), Marriage A-la-Mode and The Shrimp Girl (National Gallery), and The Beggar’s Opera (Birmingham Museums), amongst others. This is an ambitious exhibition in terms of scale, number of museum lenders, and narratives!

In addition to the ask of supporting our Fundraising aims of securing £24,000 to make the exhibition a reality (click here if you'd like to donate to the efforts), we are also hoping for volunteer support in sharing the many stories the exhibition will have to offer with visitors. To give you a teaser of what these stories might be, here are some words from Lucy Bamford, Senior Curator of Fine Art at Derby Museums:

“The exhibition focuses on Hogarth’s response to the long-running threat posed by the Jacobites, in particular, the Jacobite Rising of 1745, which is important in both the history of our city and nationally. In a campaign to topple the Hanoverian King George II, the Jacobite army, led by the ‘young pretender’ Charles Stuart, “Bonnie Prince Charlie”, marched south from Scotland to Derby, where the decision was taken to retreat rather than march on to London. It was a pivotal moment that decided the course of British history. It was a time of turmoil for Britain. As the prince and his army occupied Derby, Guardsmen were assembling on the northern edge of London in preparation to defend the king and capital. Hogarth witnessed the scene and was inspired to paint ‘The March of the Guards to Finchley’, which will form the exhibition's centrepiece.”

The exhibition is the vision of Dr Jacqueline Riding, an art historian with experience working as a curator as well as a film consultant (Peterloo and Mr Turner), and the celebrated author of Jacobites (2016) and Hogarth: Life in Progress (2021).

How you’ll be making a difference

Many of the themes and issues that Hogarth explored remain relevant today. These include themes of national identity, "Britishness", social and political commentary, propaganda, etc. In the wake of Brexit, discussions around Scottish Independence, our relationship with Europe, and conversations around monarchy are often found in daily conversations and contain parallels to Hogarth's works.

As a volunteer, you will play a vital role in engaging and giving visibility to hidden narratives within the paintings, engaging visitors in discussion and storytelling and supporting the full team in our efforts to ensure the safety of everyone and everything within the temporary exhibition. 

Proposed time donation

We would be grateful for any time you could give to facilitating the experience for our visitors. The exhibition will likely take place from March to June 2023 and volunteering can take place any time within Museum opening hours. We will work with you and other volunteers to accommodate your preference and availability wherever possible.

Location

Derby Museum & Art Gallery. 

Getting started

We proudly commit to enriching our team by progressing diversity, inclusion, relevance and accessibility into all we do - including volunteer engagement. We especially welcome applications from the global majority, and we'll work with you to break barriers. Get in touch if you'd prefer to talk in person about volunteering.

We will provide training to ensure you feel happy, safe and confident in your role. Your training will cover themes within the works, historical context, as well as the volunteer role within the galleries and basic health and safety within the space. 

The "Getting Started" section shares proposed dates for training. Click on the link to browse the available time. Expect a call from us beforehand should this be your first time volunteering within our spaces. 

Key considerations for the role 

  • Listening skills are key, as you will hear conversations that explore identity, sense of belonging (or not), representation and early British colonisation. 
  • Sharing of stories- many of Hogarth's narratives are hidden within cleverly placed items or actions. We would love for volunteers to be able to share these narratives to visitors and encourage them to spot more.
  • Be curious - learning about the collections, provenance and stories shared to develop more in-depth knowledge to pass on to visitors. 
  • We would love you to capture the feedback you get from visitors, informally or through them completing a survey with you. All opportunities to record visitor engagement and enjoyment are welcome.  
  • Be compassionate and help identify anyone going through distress, so we can provide reassurance. 
  • Champion Derby Museums and be an ambassador for our aims and values whilst recognising the problematic narratives we house within our collections. 

Getting support

Pippa Vidal Davies and Hope Slater coordinate your volunteering experience at Derby Museums. They can support you with Wellness Action Plans for any physical or mental health needs, arrange volunteer socials, or discuss personal goals linked to the opportunity.

World Collections Champion


Support, promote and interpret the Objects of Love, Hope and Fear: A World Collection gallery, and engage with visitors so they feel inspired, feel curiosity of the world around them, and are intrigued by the co-production methodology used across Derby Museums.

Time commitment 

The Museum & Art Gallery is open from Tuesday to Sunday. We hope you can give at least a couple of hours of your time to maximise your experience. Working with you to accommodate your preferences and availability. 

Location 

This role takes place primarily in Objects of Love, Hope and Fear: A World Collection gallery at the Museum and Art Gallery, although Object Walks can happen across all galleries.  

Tasks 

  • Interact with people around the museum to share your passion, knowledge, enthusiasm or curiosity for the World Cultures collections - at times, taking objects from our collection 'on a walk'
  • Be an attentive ear. Learning with and from visitors, helping Derby Museums become a better civic site. Engaging with curious visitors through sharing knowledge, curiosities, anecdotes, personal favourites, hidden features, co-production insight and other unexpected delights.
  • Safely elicit curious conversations with visitors, being prepared for difficult questions on challenging moments in our history, characters or collections. 
  • Join the team in making sure all areas are clean and tidy, ensuring all spaces are welcoming, safe and ready for visitors.
  • Promote activities, fundraising initiatives, events, and commercial events – acting as ambassadors for Derby Museums.
  • Be there for people. Proactively looking out for those who need assistance or guidance.

This role may be for you if you are: 

  • Friendly, helpful, and love talking to people and listening to their stories  
  • Wanting to engage and communicate with others and share knowledge, passion, enthusiasm and/or curiosity for world cultures
  • Aware and sensitive towards the approach of the gallery – one that welcomes discussion, sharing and empathy   
  • Intrigued and excited to know more
  • Someone who takes pride and is enthusiastic for Derby and Derby Museums. 

This role can be combined with: 

  • public programming activities such as Tours or Lifelong learning activities 
  • gallery making
  • co-produced activities
  • temporary exhibition support 

Share with us any areas of personal interest that you want to develop, along with your existing experience, to work with you to create an enriching and meaningful role.  

Training: 

We will provide you with training to ensure you feel happy, safe and confident in your role. Get an introduction to the spaces, people and the role by attending our site volunteer introductions.

Proposed dates for these are shared in the "Getting Started" section. Click on the link to browse available times or get in touch to explore alternatives. 

Getting support: 

Count on our Visitor Experience Assistant Team and Site Managers to be your point of contact once in place. The Co-production Volunteering Programme team, Pippa and Hope, manage your overall volunteering experience. Supporting you with Wellness Action Plans and/or Goal Setting Plans to discuss any physical, mental health or vocational needs or goals.   

Volunteering can help you to gain new skills, boost your confidence, make new friends, and feel connected to a community of people. It is rewarding to be part of a network of people supporting a charity by creating wonderful things and experiences together. We'll provide you with hot drinks, occasional biscuits, and travel expenses (up to the value of £4 and with the provision of a receipt). 

Nature Ambassador

Inspire people so they leave appreciating and admiring the natural world around them by supporting us within the Objects of Love, Hope and Fear: A World Collection gallery. 

Time commitment 

The Museum & Art Gallery is open from Tuesday to Sunday. We hope you can give at least a couple of hours of your time to maximise your experience. Working with you to accommodate your preferences and availability. 

Location 

This role takes place primarily in Objects of Love, Hope and Fear: A World Collection gallery at the Museum and Art Gallery, although Object Walks can happen across all galleries.  

What you may be doing:

  • Interact with people around the museum to share your passion, knowledge, enthusiasm or curiosity for the World Cultures collections - at times, taking objects from our collection 'on a walk'
  • Be an attentive ear. Learning with and from visitors, helping Derby Museums become a better civic site. Engaging with curious visitors through sharing knowledge, curiosities, anecdotes, personal favourites, hidden features, co-production insight and other unexpected delights.
  • Safely elicit curious conversations with visitors, being prepared for difficult questions on challenging moments in our history, characters or collections. 
  • Join the team in making sure all areas are clean and tidy, ensuring all spaces are welcoming, safe and ready for visitors.
  • Promote activities, fundraising initiatives, events, and commercial events – acting as ambassadors for Derby Museums.
  • Be there for people. Proactively looking out for those who need assistance or guidance.

This role may be for you if you are: 

  • Friendly, helpful, and love talking to people and listening to their stories  
  • Wanting to engage and communicate with others and share knowledge, passion, enthusiasm and/or curiosity for world cultures
  • Aware and sensitive towards the approach of the gallery – one that welcomes discussion, sharing and empathy   
  • Intrigued and excited to know more
  • Someone who takes pride and is enthusiastic for Derby and Derby Museums. 

This role can be combined with: 

  • public programming activities such as Tours or Lifelong learning activities 
  • gallery making
  • co-produced activities
  • temporary exhibition support 

Share with us any areas of personal interest that you want to develop, along with your existing experience, to work with you to create an enriching and meaningful role.  

Training: 

We will provide you with training to ensure you feel happy, safe and confident in your role. Get an introduction to the spaces, people and the role by attending our site volunteer introductions.

Proposed dates for these are shared in the "Getting Started" section. Click on the link to browse available times or get in touch to explore alternatives. 

Getting support: 

Count on our Visitor Experience Assistant Team and Site Managers to be your point of contact once in place. The Co-production Volunteering Programme team, Pippa and Hope, manage your overall volunteering experience. Supporting you with Wellness Action Plans and/or Goal Setting Plans to discuss any physical, mental health or vocational needs or goals.   

Visit Maker

 

Do you get a kick out of making someone’s day with a helping hand, a smidge of encouragement or a fantastic fact? This may be the role for you! Join the team that has been nominated for best welcome in the '2022 Museum & Heritage Awards' and share your time, knowledge and skills with visitors as they explore and ‘make’ around the museum.

Time commitment 

The Museum of Making is open from Tuesday to Sunday. We will work with you to accommodate your preferences and availability. 

Location 

The Museum of Making is open from Tuesday to Sunday. We hope you can give at least a couple of hours of your time to maximise your experience. Working with you to accommodate your preferences and availability. 

Tasks 

  • Providing a welcoming and friendly face to visitors

     

  • Engaging and conversing with visitors about our collections and interpretation

  • Signposting visitors to galleries, toilets or shops (or pointing out a friendly member of staff who can if you don’t know the answer!)

  • Helping visitors to use the Trailmaker points in the Assemblage collections space

  • Championing Derby Museums and being an ambassador for the aims and values of the Museum of Making

  • Telling stories and listening to stories from visitors

This role may be for you if you are: 

  • You enjoy talking and engaging with the general public
  • You like to hear and tell stories around our collections and the heritage of the building (our visitors have lots to tell!)
  • You are passionate about Derby Museums and would enjoy championing our collections, values and aims
  • You are a friendly and enthusiastic individual
  • You are interested in heritage and historic collections
  • You have a thirst for learning new things

This role can be combined with: 

  • public programming activities such as Tours or Lifelong learning activities 
  • gallery making
  • temporary exhibition support 

Training: 

We will provide you with training to ensure you feel happy, safe and confident in your role. Get an introduction to the spaces, people and the role by attending our site volunteer introductions.

Proposed dates for these are shared in the "Getting Started" section. Click on the link to browse available times or get in touch to explore alternatives. 

With you in mind: 

Count on our Visitor Experience Assistant Team and Site Managers to be your point of contact once in place.

The Co-production Volunteering Programme team, Pippa and Hope, manage your overall volunteering experience. Supporting you with Wellness Action Plans and/or Goal Setting Plans to discuss any physical, mental health or vocational needs or goals.   

Volunteering can help you to gain new skills, boost your confidence, make new friends, and feel connected to a community of people. It is rewarding to be part of a network of people supporting a charity by creating wonderful things and experiences together. We'll provide you with hot drinks, occasional biscuits, and travel expenses (up to the value of £4 and with the provision of a receipt). 

Co-producing

It’s ‘human-centred’ because it starts with people! It’s ‘co-production’ because we do it with people, not for them.

When we co-produce, the programmes and other outputs we design and create together are then much more relevant and accessible to a wider range of people. By co-producing, we are learning from each other; exchanging knowledge and expertise; sharing experiences and building our communities.

Join in to have your voice heard and to help build opportunities and programmes in your local museum!

Click on the information button - - to the right of the Activity Title for a preview of the information.  

Activity Shifts Start End
Microvolunteering day - Assemble bunting making 1 4/15/2023 4/15/2023
We need your support - Please write a letter to Derby City Council 0

Getting Started / Training

Here you'll find our list of site inductions and informal volunteering chats. Site or project inductions are needed before volunteering in some of our roles, so be sure to book one when the role description says it's required- otherwise you won't be able to see the opportunities!

Activity Shifts Start End
Finding Your Place With US 10 2/17/2023 8/24/2023
Introduction to Make Works- (UNDER 25s VOLUNTEERING) 1 2/3/2023 2/3/2023

Co-production Volunteering