1. Visitor Welcome - Exhibition Steward for the Hardy’s Wessex: The landscapes that inspired a writer




Volunteer Role:


Steward for the ‘Hardy’s Wessex: The landscapes that inspired a writer’ exhibition


Role Description

The post is to steward the major exhibition ‘Hardy’s Wessex: The landscapes that inspired a writer’, which will open on Saturday 28 May and run until 30 October. Hardy’s Wessex will give visitors an opportunity to take a fresh look at the life and literature of the Victorian novelist and poet, Thomas Hardy, in the stunning Wessex landscapes that shaped his view of the world. His story will be retold in exciting new ways by the museum collections, from period costumes to personal letters, art to archaeology. - Our blockbuster Hardy exhibition will run across our four museums in summer 2022 - Dorset Museum, Poole Museum, The Salisbury Museum and Wiltshire Museum. - It is the largest collection of Hardy objects ever displayed at one time. - Many of the objects have never been on public display before. - Each exhibition explores different social and landscape themes, and exhibits different objects. Poole Museum will explore love and war and the marine landscape. - Together this treasure trove of objects gives unique personal insights into Thomas Hardy, the man.

In order to secure the safe-keeping of these objects it is important that there is someone on hand to monitor the galleries and to assist the public. Other duties are likely to include:

· Monitoring drawing materials available to the public and keeping them tidy;

· Carrying out observation surveys to help the museum evaluate the exhibition’s organisation;

· Assisting with visitor feedback surveys

· Supporting young visitors to complete a family trail You may also need to hand out folding chairs to the public and also keep these tidy and safe. Please note that shift times will be set and cannot be changed for individuals.


What we can offer you? 


An opportunity to immerse yourself in the life and writings of Thomas Hardy and understand the connections with Poole and the surrounding area in his works.


Pre-exhibition briefing sessions will be held both online and in person. The dates for these sessions are yet to be decided and you will be invited to sign up for them once announced. You will receive an email with details on how to do this.


Support and training

Opportunities to take part in sector training offered by Poole Museum and partner organisations

 10% discount in the shop and café 

 The chance to learn new skills and build on existing ones

 The opportunity to make new friends and work within a team

 Regular social events

 Monthly volunteer Newsletter

 The opportunity to work with, and support the preservation of, a nationally important collection




Poole Museum, 4 High Street, Poole, BH151BW

Poole Museum - first and second floors, temporary galleries  




Activity Dates and times:


Saturday 28th May to Sunday 30th October 2022


Shift Times :


Daily there will be two shifts 10.00 to 13.30 and 13.30 to 17.00.

Please arrive at least 10 minutes before the start of your shift.


Number of Volunteers Required: 


2 volunteers per shift per day.


Skills/Qualifications/Experience needed:  


A willingness to engage with the public. Initiative to be helpful and anticipate the needs of a customer. Friendly face / approachable.


What is the minimum age for this volunteer role:


Over 18 only due to insurance & security requirements. .  


What level of fitness is required? (e.g walking, lifting, standing for long periods of time): 


You will be required to stand for some time whilst fulfilling this role and a seat will be available. You will need to be able to help with folding chairs and AV operation (training will be given).


Are accessible facilities available?  


Poole Museum is accessible by wheelchair to all floors and galleries.  There are accessible toilets on the 3rd & 5th floors.


Dress code/uniform:  


There is no specific dress code but do dress in an appropriate manner for the venue. You will be provided with a Poole Museum lanyard and volunteer badge at the beginning of you shift.



Can expenses be claimed. If so, what is the limit? 

Travel expenses can be claim for up to £5 per shift/day. Please collect an expenses form from the Front of House team, Poole Museum or email poolemuseumvolunteers@bcpcouncil.gov.uk . Receipts must be submitted with you claim.


Any other useful information: 


Prior to the exhibition opening Hardy exhibition curator, Harriet Still will be running an exhibition talk and training session for staff and volunteers. This will include an overview of Thomas Hardy and his works and details of the themes and objects that feature in Poole Museums’ Hardy exhibition.

You will be notified in good time regarding the date of this talk and training session and it will also be available online after the event.


Separate to this a volunteer briefing will be given to go through the practical elements of stewarding for the exhibition.


How to get to Poole Museum and Scaplen's Court

The museum is at the Quay side end of the High Street.


This is approximately a 12 - 15-minute walk from both Poole Railway Station and Poole Bus Station.


More Bus Services

Route One bus service from the bus station stops at Orchard Plaza (during the summer months) and outside the museum (winter timetable).

Circular Routes 8 & 9 have stops hearby.

For further information please check their website More Bus Services


Nearest public car parks are Quay Visitors car park, Old Orchard, Poole BH15 1SB and New Orchard car park, Hill St, Poole BH15 1NR.





Please note that their may be some training required for you to qualify for this activity. You will find them listed at the bottom of this form.

Most training is available via your profile. Please check (My Profile - Training).





The details contained in this volunteer role description reflect the content of this volunteering role at the date of being prepared. It is, however, possible that over time the nature of the role will change. Therefore, this volunteer role description may, from time to time, be revised.

The existence of this role description neither intends nor implies that any employment relationship is to be created either now or at any time in the future.




BCP Council and Poole Museum are working hard to make sure that you feel safe whilst volunteering for us.  Full Risk Assessments for the museum and Scaplen's Court are available to you upon request as well as a BCP Health Risk Assessment.  Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any concerns regarding volunteering and Covid-19

Schedule Summary

The next 10 shifts (out of 239 total shifts) for this activity are as follows

Date Start Time End Time
Monday, July 04, 2022 10:00 AM 1:30 PM
Monday, July 04, 2022 1:30 PM 5:00 PM
Tuesday, July 05, 2022 10:00 AM 1:30 PM
Tuesday, July 05, 2022 1:30 PM 5:00 PM
Wednesday, July 06, 2022 10:00 AM 1:30 PM
Wednesday, July 06, 2022 1:30 PM 5:00 PM
Thursday, July 07, 2022 10:00 AM 1:30 PM
Thursday, July 07, 2022 1:30 PM 5:00 PM
Friday, July 08, 2022 10:00 AM 1:30 PM
Friday, July 08, 2022 1:30 PM 5:00 PM