Posted 31 May 2023

Celebrating National Volunteers' Week

As part of National Volunteers' Week, we caught up with some of our volunteers to find out what volunteering at Waddesdon is like.

What does your volunteer role involve?

‘My volunteer role at Waddesdon is acting as a Grounds Host. Either welcoming guests at the Welcome Pavilion, helping guests when they arrive at the house, whether by bus or on foot or roaming the estate, offering advice and assistance.’ – Andrew, Grounds Host.

‘I volunteer at Waddesdon Manor as a House Host and more recently as an Object Handler.  Working with another volunteer we greet visitors and are able to offer them an opportunity to get much closer to objects used in the House than is normally possible.  This not only allows us to talk about the objects themselves (ranging from copper kettles to Sevres dinner service)  but also discuss conservation, history of the house and family members and answer any questions from visitors.’ –  Susan, House Host.

How long have you volunteered at Waddesdon for?

Sandi and Rosemary who volunteer in Waddesdon’s Gift and Wine Shop have volunteered at Waddesdon for an impressive amount of time. Sandi has been volunteering for 10 years and Rosemary for 18 years.

What is your favourite thing about volunteering at Waddesdon?

‘My favourite thing about volunteering at Waddesdon is coming to a beautiful place, learning all about its fascinating history and meeting lovely people.’ – Jacqui, Garden Guide, House Host and Handling Collection Volunteer.

‘I get to meet people from many different backgrounds, many different ages, and nationalities. I love being amongst the greenery, flowers, and fauna. I like being involved with the seasonal events such as Chilli Fest, Doodle Jam and Christmas. I enjoy seeing visitors happy after chatting with them, it gives me a great sense of satisfaction.’ – Andrew, Grounds Host.

‘I enjoy meeting people of all ages, from babies to grandparents, from many different countries and cultures as well as working with over 350 amazing volunteers. We receive excellent support and training from all the professional staff and are always encouraged to try different volunteering roles.’  – Susan, House Host.

What are you most looking forward to about the Wedding Cake?

‘It will be an interesting work of art to explore, and its theme of romance will complement the weddings at the beautiful Dairy.’ – Jacqui, Garden Guide, House Host and Handling Collection Volunteer.

‘Never seen anything like it before’ – Kerry, House Host.

‘It is something totally exclusive to Waddesdon and will undoubtedly add to the visitor experience, it will open access to parts of the estate that people haven’t seen before.’ – Andrew, Grounds Host.

‘It’s unique’ – Jeremy, Grounds Host and Aviary Assistant.

‘I’m looking forward to the Wedding Cake as it’s a new and exciting 12 metre ceramic addition to a beautiful area within Waddesdon besides the 19th century Dairy. Visitors will be able to climb inside the three-tiered structure and see for themselves a new sculpture by the celebrated Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos.’ – Susan, House Host.

We can’t thank our volunteers enough for everything they do at Waddesdon.

If you’re interested in volunteering at Waddesdon, sign up to our open day on 10 June. Find out more>