The Grace Darling Museum is looking for extra volunteers

The RNLI is looking for extra volunteers to help run the popular Grace Darling Museum in Bamburgh.

By Ian Smith
Tuesday, 22nd January 2019, 2:51 pm
Updated Tuesday, 22nd January 2019, 2:58 pm
The Grace Darling Museum in Bamburgh. Picture by Jane Coltman
The Grace Darling Museum in Bamburgh. Picture by Jane Coltman

Just like the charity’s lifeboat stations, the museum relies on volunteers to keep it running. New recruits don’t need to be experts on the iconic north east heroine – they just need some spare time and a willingness to learn the ropes.

The museum is enjoyed by almost 60,000 visitors a year, including holidaymakers, families, schools and history groups. It has become a firm 'must see' on the Northumberland tourist trail.

Museum manager, Marleen Vincenten, said: "It would be great to have a couple more volunteers in the team. Ideally, we’d like people who could spare half a day a week, but would be grateful for absolutely any time and skills people can offer us.

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"Volunteering at the RNLI Grace Darling Museum is an incredibly rewarding experience and everyone who joins the team is also helping the RNLI’s lifeboat crews and lifeguards, as all money raised here goes directly towards helping the charity save lives at sea and preserving the heritage of the RNLI."

Volunteers can give up as much or as little time as they can spare to help in the museum and will be given training. The museum is looking for volunteers who can welcome visitors and man the shop, as well as people to run education sessions for school groups.

Ros McHugh has been volunteering at the museum for about four years and says she enjoys the half-day she spends at the museum each week.

"Growing up by the sea I’ve always been a keen supporter of the RNLI, so it’s great to know I’m giving something back to such a worthwhile charity," he said.

"Spending time in the museum really is interesting and the work varies quite a lot. I can be working in the shop, welcoming visitors or sometimes helping out with school visits.

"It’s very rewarding to see how much people get out of their visit to the museum, especially the children who are enthralled not just by Grace’s courage but also by the Darlings’ life in the lighthouse."

Fellow volunteer Alison Hilton agrees: "The story of Grace Darling is such a vital part of Bamburgh, and it’s wonderful to feel part of that community. I didn’t really know much about Grace Darling and her family when I started volunteering but it’s been quite an education to find out more about her and I enjoy sharing that knowledge with the visitors."

Anyone who is interested in volunteering can contact the RNLI Grace Darling Museum on 01668 214910 or [email protected]