We do not currently have opportunities for new volunteers, as our building and garden are closed, but we will have some when we reopen in late summer 2023!
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We are currently not looking for more volunteers due to our current closure for building works (Jan 2023).
Open days and events
The Institute runs a busy programme of events throughout the year, all of which depend on the help of volunteers. Opportunities for involvement range from manning a stand at a show to giving horticultural advice at the annual plant sale, helping run our tea and cake stall, and handing out information leaflets about the Institute. See Events for upcoming activities where we will need help!
We run a range of programmes for our school visits, mainly primary level. These sessions take place on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. We also run family activities during most school holidays, when help is needed. See School Visits for more information. For volunteering details please see Education volunteer role description.
Volunteers assist in maintenance tasks such as tidying up herbarium sheets and the weekly task of freezing specimens to prevent insect infestation and damage. The historic nature of the herbarium and its arrangement provides additional interest when incorporating recently donated specimens and naturalised alien species. See Herbarium for more information. We currently have no volunteering work available in our herbarium.
Volunteers assist in a variety of tasks, including arranging subject sections and updating our catalogue to reflect changing interests and new acquisitions. See Library for more information. Volunteers come in on Thursdays when some of them also take the lead in welcoming visitors and showing them around. No volunteering opportunities until we reopen.
The garden provides opportunities for volunteers to be involved in the care of many rare and unusual plants. Tasks tend to focus on the practical maintenance – sweeping, pruning etc and some propagation. All plants are labelled and most volunteers widen their knowledge through working with species new to them. Volunteers also help set up open days and welcome visitors to the garden. See Garden for more information. We currently have no volunteer vacancies in our garden.
It might not sound very glamorous but the help we get here is hugely appreciated! Volunteers help with publicising our events, developing materials, administering course bookings etc. Great work experience and a chance to learn about the other areas of the Institute too.