Volunteer Week at American Museum

The American Museum in Britain Celebrates Volunteer Week
3 to 6 June 2014

2014 marks the 30th anniversary of Volunteer Week and to celebrate the American Museum is offering free entry to prospective volunteers from 3 to 6 June. If you are interested in contributing your skills and time, pick up a special leaflet from Bath Volunteer Centre* and come along to see what the Museum has to offer.

American Museum volunteer David Ryall explaining an object in the New Orleans Period Room (c. 1860)
American Museum volunteer David Ryall explaining an object in the New Orleans Period Room (c. 1860)

The success of the American Museum, which attracted over 35,000 visitors in 2013, is largely due to its team of over 100 enthusiastic volunteers who guide visitors, give tours, assist with special events, and work in the gardens, herb shop and library.

Every museum needs volunteers but at the American Museum in Britain, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2011, it is the visitors’ encounters with these unsung heroes that literally bring the rooms to life.

It was the intention of the founders, Dallas Pratt and John Judkyn, to provide an experience for visitors that was different from that at other English country houses.

Today, visitors still find a real person in each Period Room, talking about the objects, providing context and enriching the experience. To thank the existing volunteer team for all their hard work throughout the year, the Museum is holding an afternoon tea party on the terrace. Volunteers have also been invited to take part in a ‘Great American Bake-Off’ with prizes for the best entries.

In 2013, the Museum introduced a comprehensive training programme for its volunteers. This has been hugely successful, not only with would-be but also with existing volunteers. The Museum is a wonderful place to work where you can meet new people, learn new skills, and contribute to the community. Why not give it a whirl – with your new-found knowledge, the pub quiz will never be the same again!

If you want to find out more about becoming a volunteer:
Contact the Volunteer Coordinator on 01225 823017 or coordinator@americanmuseum.org. Benefits include: reimbursement of travel expenses, refreshments, discounts in the Museum shops and Café, use of the library by appointment, coffee mornings and knowledge-sharing talks, annual outing and Christmas party, complimentary Museum tickets for family and friends, copies of Museum publications and free entry to the American Museum as a visitor.

* Bath Volunteer Centre
Bath Central Library, 19 The Podium, Northgate St, Bath BA1 5AN, tel: 01225 338105