Meet some of our fantastic ORNC Volunteers and find out why they chose to volunteer at the ORNC.

Learn more about volunteering at our volunteer experience days!

Rachel Bates

Rachel joined the ORNC in 2014 and was inspired by her love of maritime history and the magnificent architecture of the ORNC. She originally applied for the role of Communications Volunteer, seeing it as a chance to experience a side of the heritage industry she wasn’t familiar with. Rachel helped out in the busy communications office, where she scheduled social media posts, created flyers and posters, and updated the ORNC website. Over time Rachel’s role changed and she was offered to opportunity to curate the ‘Hidden Details of the ORNC’ photography competition, which was a massive success.

The exhibition encouraged our visitors to photograph their favourite ‘hidden details’ around the ORNC.

I had the freedom to run it independently, even though staff were always willing to help me. I have learnt a lot, including project management skills, budgeting, how to lay out an exhibition, and about the importance of social media for museums. It’s been a fascinating journey. I am now working on the next exhibition called ORNC Goes to the Movies and I’m managing another volunteer.

Rachel urges anyone who might be on the fence about volunteering to ‘give it a go’

If you are 'on the fence' just give it a try! Everyone here is so welcoming you'll soon believe you've always been here.

Daren Clarke

Meet Daren Clark, Volunteer Explainer at the ORNC.

I volunteer at the ORNC because I want to gain more experience and promote my local neighbourhood, I also heard really good things about the ORNC Volunteer program as a whole and I wanted to expand my knowledge about the history of the site.

I really enjoy meeting the public, and my role as a Volunteer Explainer, involves giving short talks to visitors about the history of the Painted Hall and the upcoming conservation works. I feel I have learned so much about my local area and its history, and I have increased my public speaking skills thanks to giving talks to groups and visitors.

There has been so many fulfilling moments during my time at the ORNC, I like it when visitors have previous connections with the site through the Royal Navy, and they’ve usually got some great stories.

Frances Moore-Hill

Frances has been an ORNC volunteer for a year and has worked in a number of different departments.

I decided to volunteer at the ORNC because I have always had an interest in history and I came across the advert and it really appealed to me.

I joined as a visitor experience volunteer, meeting and greeting our visitors and telling them about the site and what they should see here. I love working in the painted hall and telling the stories about the paintings. It is great to be able to let a visitor see the meanings in the work and to bring it all to life.  I also helped out with the schools, taking groups around the Discover Greenwich centre before going over to the Skittle Alley and letting them have a go. I trained to give short talks on the Tudors at Greenwich and undertook short walks to the Water Gates, pointing out places of interest to our visitors. Another role I do is to provide Volunteer Co-ordinator, Anne, with some admin support, helping to recruit other volunteers like myself.

Since volunteering I have found my confidence has really increased and I was able to use old skills I had not used for some time. I realised I enjoyed administration and organising much more than I had thought! I also became much more confident in public speaking through giving the 10 minute talks.

I have had a great time and met some lovely people. To anyone hesitating I would say take the plunge and apply. You will never be asked to do something you are not comfortable with and there is plenty of support for you. It doesn’t take long before you are able to share the stories with the visitors and it is very rewarding.


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