Volunteers are the lifeblood of Museums Partnership Reading.

We love working with volunteers. And people love volunteering with us at Reading Museum and Reading Abbey Quarter.

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 won a 2019 Investing in Volunteers accreditation, the UK quality standard for good practice in volunteer management.

Volunteers help us make our collections and events more accessible to others.

Whether you want to greet visitors, help at our special events, or help us tell the fascinating history of Reading Abbey Quarter, we’re dedicated to giving you the best experience possible.  And we’re always thinking of new ways volunteers can get involved with our programming.

Obviously with the ongoing Covid pandemic, things are a bit more complicated than they once were.
Reading Museum and the Abbey Quarter is not currently in a position to accommodate any in-person volunteering roles.

We currently have one opportunity to get involved and be part of our volunteer family. We will highlight any further roles associated with Reading Museum on this page.

1. Community Engagement Volunteer - High Street Heritage Action Zones

We are seeking six volunteers to support Reading Borough Council's ‘High Street Heritage Action Zone’.
Reading Borough Council has been awarded £806,500 of funding from Historic England to transform the high streets in three conservation areas in the town centre, including the Oxford Road.

The HSHAZ programme has three complementary strands:

Physical interventions to restore and repair building and improve the public realm
A programme of cultural activities to celebrate the high streets and their importance to local communities
Community engagement which will give local people a key role in deciding what work they want to see happening on their high streets

This opportunity is for a team of six volunteers to get involved in the community engagement strand, to support the Community Engagement & Cultural Officer to build new relationships with commercial/cultural and community groups in the Heritage Action Zone.

Please look for the role description for 'Community Engagement Volunteer - High Street Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ), and make sure you tick this 'Interest' when applying on our online volunteering platform. The deadline for applying for this role is Sunday 7 March.

We are recruiting now, with the hope that volunteers will be able to begin working with members of the public, once pandemic restrictions allow.

More information about the HSHAZ project is available at www.reading.gov.uk/hshaz

To apply to be a volunteer for Museums Partnership Reading, get yourself a cuppa and follow this link to our volunteering platform to complete your volunteer application. 

You will see a list of all roles performed by existing Museums Partnership Reading volunteers. Feel free to tick any that interest you, so that we can let you know in future if a vacancy arises for that role. 

When you’re happy with your application, don’t forget to click SUBMIT!

Our partner museum,The Museum of English Rural Life (The MERL) also features its volunteering opportunities on the volunteering platform.

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 aim to respond to all applications within 30 days.*

Data collection and processing is in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation 2016, and the Data Protection Act 2018, and in line with host organisation The MERL’s 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 third 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 the projects our volunteers have been involved in, why not read our blogs: 'Why people volunteer at Reading Museum' and 'A journey in volunteering'.

Our blog 'Snowdrops are acumen back to Reading Abbey' looks at how we work with local businesses and the interesting projects we have found for their employees' 'charity days'.

Museum Diversity Trainee Charlene measuring an object on a black piece of foamboard.
A helping hand at the museum store