Volunteer at Reading Museum

Volunteers are the lifeblood of Museums Partnership Reading.

We love working with volunteers. And people love volunteering with us.

Museums Partnership Reading is an Arts Council England funded partnership between The MERL and Reading Museum.

At both museums, we want you to feel part of a team, to have fun and meet new people, get a chance to explore a hobby or interest, or perhaps to gain experience in the workplace while developing supplementary skills to enhance a CV too.

We want you to feel part of a team, to have fun and meet new people, get a chance to explore a hobby or interest, or perhaps to gain experience in the workplace while developing supplementary skills to enhance a CV too.

Our roles are varied and well-supported, and volunteers come from a wide range of backgrounds.  We aim to reflect the diverse community of Reading. We are accredited by Investing in Volunteers, the UK quality standard for good practice in volunteer management. 

Volunteers help in lots of ways to help us connect more people to our collections and events, and we’re dedicated to giving you the best experience possible. 

Current Opportunities

We currently have the following opportunity to get involved and be part of our volunteer family.

  • We are looking for young volunteers aged 14 to 18 years old to join our Museums Partnership Reading Youth Panel from September 2024.
    Meetings will take place on the third Thursday of the month, online or in person, usually from 4:30 to 6pm

We will highlight any vacancies associated with Reading Museum on this webpage. We also feature any volunteering opportunities for our partner museum The Museum of English Rural Life (The MERL) on the volunteering platform.

To apply to be one of our volunteersget yourself a cuppa and fill in the application form on our volunteering platform.

  • You can browse a complete list of all roles performed by existing Museums Partnership Reading volunteers.
  • When we have a vacancy for a role, it will say *Now recruiting* next to the title of the role.
  • Feel free to tick a few that interest you, so that we can let you know in future if a vacancy arises for that role.
  • Please note that if you do not tick any of the interests, we won't contact you, as you won't come up in our search for that vacancy.

In your application, please give us as much relevant information as you like, including: how you feel you meet the requirements of the volunteering role, and how you would like to help. The more we know about you and what you are interested in, the easier it is for us to match you.

On some occasions more volunteers apply for the role than we have opportunity for in the rota. 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*. 

Remember to indicate in the Availability section if specific days of the week or time of day work best around your other commitments.

As soon as you are registered, you'll join the waiting list.

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

As soon as we are recruiting to that role, we will get in touch with our matches and invite them to an informal interview. This can be over Zoom/ Teams, or in person according to your preference.

If you need any help with the application process, please email VolunteerHQ@reading.ac.uk and we will do our best to help. 

Thank you. 

*We are lucky enough to receive a high volume of volunteer applications. We will get in touch as soon as we are actively recruiting to a vacancy that matches the information on your form. Sometimes there may be a wait of some months before we can match you to a role, but please be assured we work as fast as we can to give as many people as possible the opportunity to join our volunteer family. We hope you agree it is worth the wait!* 

Data collection and processing is in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation 2016, and the Data Protection Act 2018, and in line with our Privacy Policy.

Investing in Volunteers

Reading Museum is committed to providing training and ongoing support to our volunteers to help them flourish in their roles. We achieved the Investing in Volunteers national standard, for the fourth time, as part of the Museums Partnership Reading with The Museum of English Rural Life (The MERL). Our assessment report is available to download below.

What do our volunteers do?

To find out more about projects our volunteers have been involved in, why not read our blog 'Digging Deeper: Volunteer Satisfaction at The MERL and Reading Museum'.


A helping hand at the museum store