We’ve had an indUStrious month with Halloween, half-term and a heck of a lot of co-production volunteering! During October our brilliant volunteer community collectively gave a whopping 1,724 hours in volunteering to Derby Museums Trust.  The following Opportunities Post is possibly the largest ever and is jam packed with exciting new ways to get active, meet people, build great things together and support Derby’s heritage.  So take a deep breath, maybe grab a cuppa and read on to find out more.

Together, we are MUSEUM.

Looking for an exciting new focUS? Our latest volunteer co-production opportunities will excite and delight!

Become a WW1 Researcher
Might you like to conduct research into the men and women from Derby who served in the First World War? This is an opportunity to work with Angela Tarnowski, Curator of the 9th/12th Royal Lancers Museum and your research will feed into an exhibition to mark the centenary of the end of the First World War.  The exhibition will run from October 2018 to January 2019 and will look at what life was like in Derby during the War, how the people of Derby commemorated the War after it was over, and how Derby adapted to peacetime.

Most of your research will take place at the Local Studies Library in Derby. An interest in/knowledge of carrying out research is desirable and some training and ongoing guidance and support will be given.  If you are interested in helping to research Derby’s role in the War please get in touch with Kath ASAP.

Become a World Cultures Project Champion
There is an exciting new gallery emerging at the Museum and Art Gallery that will celebrate Derby Museums’ World Cultures Collection. We’ve been working closely with the people of Derby, volunteers, visitors and other museums to develop this space. We’re now reaching out for a new member of the team to be a part of the project.

Are you passionate about museums and their collections? Do you get a buzz from sharing this excitement with others? We’re looking to use this enthusiasm to spread the word and invite visitors to be engaged in the project. Working on-site at the Museum and Art Gallery, you will share historic objects as prompts to spark conversations and ideas. These conversations will shape and inform the next stage of the exhibition and encourage visitors to visit the project space and get involved.  So, do you think you could be a World Cultures Project Champion for Derby Museums? If so, email Kath to register your interest and request a Volunteer Role Profile.

Become an Arts and Heritage Programme Co-producer
Would you like to share your skills and knowledge with Derby Museums in helping deliver a range of imaginative artist-led projects?  Would you like to learn more about how to run artist-led projects and help build your skills in running arts and cultural events for your community?  We would like to bring together a diverse group of people from Derby to help create new and vibrant artworks.  We invite you to become an important partner as a co-producer in a range of projects or arts-related activities.

If you are interested in working in the arts, this opportunity could offer you practical experience of:

  • becoming involved in an artist’s commissioning process
  • understand curatorial and arts producer roles
  • support arts-promotion and communications activity

This is an opportunity to learn together and share our enthusiasm for the arts.

Click here to read more about the project and come and find out more, ask questions and meet other co-producers on: Tuesday 28 November 5.30-7 pm at Derby Museum and Art Gallery or Wednesday 29 November 5.30-7 pm at Artcore, Derby.  To register your interest in this project, to let us know you are coming or to ask any questions before the ‘find out more’ sessions, please contact Gemma.

Join us for A Very (Un)Grimm Christmas Fayre
We are looking for volunteers to help us run a fabulously Christmassy family event at Pickford’s House on Saturday 2 December, 10am-4pm. The House will be beautifully dressed for a Georgian Christmas with costumed interpreters helping to bring the house to life.  Mulled wine will be bubbling away in the kitchen, storytelling in the bedroom, six crafts (all related to the Grimm Brother’s Fairy Tales) spread out around the house, refreshments, a raffle and three schools singing on the stairs.  All in all, it should be a magical day.  We’d really like you to be a part of this special day, helping to greet visitors, supporting families to get the very best out of the craft activities and generally bringing a little Christmas magic to proceedings to help things run smoothly.  If you are interested in volunteering or would like to know more, please contact Gemma.

Offer support for fun Family Activities
Support our brilliant Facilitators to engage with and inspire visitors of all ages to make, share, laugh and learn.  As a Family Activity Volunteer you will play an important role in supporting our audiences to get the very best out of their visit; a warm welcome, a friendly ear, a helping hand in making. We have two upcoming events that we’d love your help to support. Our Facilitators will tell you all you need to know before the session starts.

Georgian Jollies: Pickford’s Family Fun and Games
Tuesday 19 December 10am-12pm and 1-3pm
At Pickford’s House

Family Friday Christmas Crafts
Friday 22 December 10-11.30am
At the Museum and Art Gallery

If you’d like to know more about this opportunity or to register your interest, please email Gemma

InstantaneoUS Joy: Current Micro Volunteering Opportunities
We know you’re a bUSy lot, so here’s how you can volunteer with just hours or even minutes to spare.  

World Cultures Sharing Days
We still have a couple of dates coming up for people to get a flavour of the World Cultures Project and participate where time and interest tempts.  The days are lively, playful drop-in events and a valuable part of the co-production process.  The first five sharing days have been beautiful, lively events with up to 250 visitors participating. You can drop in on any of the following days between 11am and 3pm to take part.  Or, if you think you might like to support a Sharing Day by helping to set up and/or host activities, please contact Andrea H-J.

World Cultures Sharing Day: edition 6 Materials, texture, comfort and colour
Help us celebrate and explore the next phase of the new gallery. Come along on Saturday 18 November to experience what has been co-designed so far and start to populate the space with your own thoughts and feelings. There’ll be opportunities to make, create and participate.

World Cultures Sharing Day: edition 7 Beyond the label
How might we reveal and share the many stories that each object holds?  Drop in on Saturday 20 January to shape and inform how the World Cultures collection is interpreted. Have a go at making a mini gallery guide, write a label, test prototype interpretive tools or interview an object.  We’re interested in what you think and feel about the objects, the people who collected them and the emerging gallery themes.  Together we’ll reveal untold stories and add voice to the silent objects.

Raise funds for our fantastic mUSeums while you shop (and possibly win some bubbly)
Derby Museums Trust is a member of the UK’s leading online fundraising service, easyfundraising, which enables you to raise money for us, at no cost to you, all while you do your usual online shopping.  The website costs nothing to use and it’s easy to register; just choose Derby Museums as your charity of choice.  There are nearly 3,000 retailers on board including Amazon, eBay, John Lewis, Sainsbury’s, Virgin Trains and Aviva so simply pick the one you want and start shopping.

All you have to do is:

  • Sign up: Click this link and sign up for free.
  • Shop: Every time you shop online, head to easyfundraising first. Some retailers are even offering double donations this week!
  • Raise: After you’ve checked out, that retailer will make a free donation to Derby Museums – it doesn’t cost you a penny extra!

By buying through this website you get exactly the same items at exactly the same cost, but the website automatically makes a donation to us. It’s essentially generating free donations for Derby Museums Trust.  So if you ever buy anything online, please join over 1.3 million other caring shoppers sign up on the Easy Fundraising website and give it a go.  The money you generate as you go about your usual shopping will help keep Derby Museums’ three brilliant sites fantastic an free for everyone.

As a thank you we are offering a bottle of Prosecco to the person who raises the highest amount between now and the next team meeting (approximately two months’ time). So that’s plenty of time for any travel, hotels, Christmas gifts and sales shopping to contribute to your total.

Lend us your ears for the This is Normanton project
This is a brilliantly flexible opportunity for anyone struggling to find the time to volunteer.  You can volunteer from the comfort of your own home for as little as half an hour and you can do it at 3am if you choose!

This is Normanton is a project exploring the changing landscape of Normanton Road from the 1960s to present day.  As part of the project, the team have been collecting oral testimonies from local residents.  We’d really love you to take some time to listen to one or more of these fascinating testimonies (each one is 30 minutes long) and share your top five favourite moments with us.  It would also be really helpful if you could also make a note of any places mentioned in the testimonies which will help us to link these testimonies with our on-going archival research. To register your interest, to learn more about the project and to gain access to the audio files please contact Gemma.

Follow the This Is Normanton Facebook page and share your memories and photos

Get chilly for the Chilli Festival
The Silk Mill will be hosting the Derby Christmas Chilli Fiesta on Saturday 2 December and we’d love your help to spread the word on the streets of Derby.  Might you be willing to give out flyers in the town centre on Saturday 25 Nov (12-2pm) and/or Saturday 2 Dec (10am-12pm) to drum up some excitement about the event?  We know this might be rather a chilly endeavour so, if you’re willing to spend a couple of hours in the cold, we’d like to say a big warm thank you with a free hot drink and piece of cake in the Museum and Art Gallery café afterwards.  If you’re interested in knowing more and/or might be willing to get chilly in support of Derby Museums Trust, please contact Gemma.

Spend an evening with Mayor of Derby and friends from Derby Museums
The Mayor of Derby is hosting a Charity Quiz Night on Saturday 25 November from 7pm to help raise money for Derby Museums (amongst a few other chosen charities). With an ambitious fundraising target of £25,000 for his year as Mayor, it would be great if you might like to either form a team with friends and family (register your team’s details direct on Eventbrite) or join a Derby Museums team (please contact Jen to let us know you’d like to come by Monday 20 November).

The quiz is £12 a ticket which includes quiz entry and fish and chips (or a vegetarian alternative).

Be a guinea pig for our shiny new Volunteer Induction Session
We are committed to ensuring you enjoy the very best volunteer experience possible and are currently in the midst of refining and updating many of our volunteering processes, forms and training sessions.  One of the most important aspects of this work is to create an informative and enjoyable induction session for all volunteers.  We would love the opportunity to test out what we’ve come up with so far on some friendly faces.  So we have scheduled a Prototype Volunteer Induction at Pickford’s House on Thursday 14 December 1.30-4pm.  We’d really like you to come along and experience the session then share your thoughts and ideas for how we might improve it.  Tea, coffee and copious amounts of biscuits will be provided, of course.  If you’d like to come please email Gemma.  Just to let you know, all volunteers will eventually be asked to sign up to a new induction session, so this is a great way to get a head start!



A little bonUS opportunity with our friends up the valley
Our friends at The Arkwright Society are looking for enthusiastic individuals to join the friendly volunteer team and help to preserve Cromford Mills for future generations. Opportunities include:

  • Visitor Centre Hosts
  • Tour Guides
  • Costumed Interpreters
  • Christmas Shop Volunteers

If you have any questions about volunteering for The Arkwright Society or think you might like to know more, please call 01629 823256 or email volunteering@arkwrightsociety.org.uk.

Phew!  We hope you found something to aroUSe your interest in that profUSion of co-production opportunities!

Remember, every minute you give makes a huge difference and helps to keep Derby Museums fantastic and free for everyone.  Thank you so very much.

Please don’t hesitate to contact Kath (Museum and Gallery and Pickford’s House) or Gemma (The Silk Mill) if you have any volunteering queries, questions or ideas.  We always love to hear from you.