School Holiday Events & Activities Volunteer BOTH MUSEUMS

School Holiday Events & Activities Volunteer


Family events activities are scheduled throughout the local school holidays at the following partner museums and nearby outdoor spaces: 

  • Reading Museum
  • Reading Abbey Quarter (e.g. Forbury Gardens and Abbey Ruins)
  • The Museum of English Rural Life (The MERL) on Redlands Road, Reading
  • The MERL garden

Role Description


Why we want you 

Events & Activities volunteers help us to deliver a programme of fun, friendly and fabulous special events all year, either at the Museums or out and about in the community.

 You will help our Visitor Welcome teams to provide an exceptional welcome, and help with a wide range of family activities.  

To get an idea of the kind of family activities which take place throughout the year, please see our What’s On pages

The Museum of English Rural Life

Reading Museum

What you will be doing 

  • Greeting visitors with a warm welcome 
  • Helping to maintain a high level of presentation in the welcome areas and in the galleries 
  • Ticket checking of arriving visitors for bookable events
  • Assisting with enquiries
  • Assisting with an activity (including preparation, re-stocking and clean-up)
  • Supervising a particular area, explaining how equipment works, and checking it is charged up
  • Supervising the colouring area (tidying colouring sheets) 
  • [If trained in this] - Object handling (familiarising yourself with the objects and running the activity)
  • Assisting with gallery trails (handing out the paper trails, explaining the task and collecting them in)

What you will gain in return  

  • Experience of working within a team of museums staff & volunteers 
  • Experience of welcoming visitors of all ages, in engaging environments 
  • An introduction to the Museum, its services and facilities
  • You will have the opportunity to attend outreach events in our local community to spread the word about the Museum and encourage people to visit, chatting about what’s on offer at the Museum  

  This role will suit you if you are 

  • Someone who enjoys variety – no two activities are exactly the same and involve a variety of tasks and themes  
  • Able to work as part of a team 
  • Enthusiastic, outgoing and polite engaging with a friendly and diverse audience
  • Self-motivated and pro-active 
  • Have good communication skills 
  • Looking to apply existing experience in a people-facing role  
  • Be aware that some of our events take place outdoors in The MERL garden or in the Forbury Gardens, so be prepared to volunteer in all weathers!


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How much time will it take up? 

This role is very flexible and has no regular time commitment, although events are always during local school holidays.

The Event programme is planned in advance, so we are able to give some notice some weeks ahead. 

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To apply

We next plan to recruit volunteers to this role in January ahead of the February half term.

New prospective volunteers

If you are not already registered to volunteer with Museums Partnership Reading, please apply on our volunteering platform, ensuring you tick the box next to ‘School Holiday Events & Activities Volunteer’ in your ‘Interests’. 

If you are using a mobile or tablet, once you click ‘Fill in an Application’, look out for the suggestion ‘It looks like you are on a mobile device. For a better experience on smart phones, go to Mobile Application Form’ and click on the link it suggests. 

We sometimes find that more volunteers apply for the role than we have vacancies. You are welcome to attach your CV if you wish, but please include key relevant information when answering the application form questions, as this may be used if we need to shortlist from a larger group of applicants.  

When you are happy with your application, please don’t forget to click SUBMIT – otherwise we will never receive the form!

Existing volunteers

If you are already registered to volunteer with Museums Partnership Reading, please log in to the volunteering platform, click on My Profile, select the ‘Interests’ section, ensuring you tick the box next to ‘School Holiday Events & Activities Volunteer’ in your ‘Interests’.  

Matching to the Role 

To help us select our volunteers for this role, we will look through all the application/ registration forms of those interested in this role, and we will draw up a shortlist of those who most closely match our ideal requirements, based on what you told us on your application form.

Before the main school holidays in February Half Term, the Easter Holidays, Summer Holidays, and October Half term, we will invite a limited number of prospective volunteers to a group volunteer induction session to help inform you further about what the role involves.