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Join the 500 volunteers supporting our work

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York Minster relies on the support of around 500 volunteers to enhance the experience and enjoyment of people visiting the cathedral.

The opportunities to volunteer at the Minster are diverse, with roles ranging from Bell-ringers to Guides, Stewards to Flower Arrangers or Learning Volunteers. Our volunteers give varying amounts of time, starting at one or two hours a fortnight, and volunteer for many different reasons. These can include:

We welcome people from all age groups, backgrounds and faiths (or none) who are interested in giving some of their time on a regular basis. If you would be interested in joining our community, please see our current volunteering vacancies below.

Current vacancies

None

Recruitment Policy

For more details about recruitment at York Minster, download our Recruitment Policy below.

Download

Servers

The Minster also has Servers to assist in the worship of the cathedral by performing specific duties during services. They include the Crucifer who carries the processional cross, the Taperers who carry candles in the procession and the Thurifer who, at some services, carries and swings the Thurible emitting incense.

Library, Archive and Collections Volunteers

The Old Palace Historic Collections has several volunteer roles. Volunteers on the Old Palace reception welcome users and provide information. Volunteers also steward the many exhibitions held in the Old Palace. People can also help with projects in the Archives and Collections.

Bell-ringers

York Minster has the fourth heaviest set of change ringing bells in the world and each Sunday they are rung by our band of volunteer bell-ringers to call people to worship at the 10am service. Change ringing is a traditional English art form, with the aim to ring the bells in an even rhythm. Ringers can learn ever-more complex patterns in order to ring the bells in a different, pre-prescribed number of changes. So as well as being physical exercise, it is a good mental challenge too. Practice nights are on Tuesday evenings from 7.30pm-9pm, with ringing starting on Sunday at 9am ahead of the main service. If you would be interested in joining the York Minster Volunteer Bell Ringing Team, or coming as a visiting ringer, please contact Andy Blacklock, Head of Bell Tower, at e: headofbelltower@yorkminster.org.

Service and Concert Stewards

Stewarding at services and concerts usually takes place in the evening or at a weekend and involves welcoming people to the Minster, directing them to their seat and distributing service sheets. Some of this is on a rota basis, e.g. stewarding at Evensong and some Sunday Services. Extra services and concerts are on an ad-hoc basis.

Guides

Guides are in the Minster Monday to Saturday and work in two ways, either as a Scheduled Guide with a commitment of one guided tour a week, or as a Session Guide spending half a day a week in the Minster engaging with visitors and conducting guided tours. Some Guides undergo additional training to become a Guide in the Minster's Centre for School Visits. All who guide in the Minster have to complete the Guides' Course.

Informal Learning Volunteers

Informal Learning Volunteers assist the Education Officers in providing exciting family activities during school holidays which enhance visitor enjoyment, leading to a greater understanding of York Minster and its collections. Recent activities have included designing shields, making clay tiles and gargoyles and stained glass sun-catchers. This role does not have a rota but is on an ad-hoc basis.

Information Desk Stewards and Chapter House Stewards

The Information Desk Stewards answer visitors' questions at the Information Point in the Minster. There are four time slots, (Mon - Sat) and volunteers would normally undertake one of these time slots per week. Information Desk Stewards work alongside the Group Desk Coordinator (a paid member of staff). You are given an initial induction and as there is information on the desk, you also read and learn as you go along. Chapter House Stewards also have a rota with two-hour time slots, and are based in the Chapter House to enable visitors to ask questions about this space.

Specialised Roles

Volunteers are also engaged in more specialised roles, including: embroidery, caring for vestments, flower arranging and Sunday School helpers. Our Honorary Chaplains also provide pastoral care for visitors.

Contact

If you are interested in volunteering at York Minster, please contact:

Victoria Imada, HR and Volunteering Administrator

T: 01904 557247

E: volunteering@yorkminster.org

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