Textiles Conservation Volunteer

Durham City

To ensure regular maintenance and cleaning of the Cathedral’s important textiles including frontals, kneelers and vestments.
• To help preserve the Cathedral’s collection of textiles currently in use for future generations.
• To evaluate and feedback on the condition of the textiles to the Head of Collections.


• Use special museum vacs to carefully remove dust and debris.
• Support the Head of Collections to document any changes in the condition of textiles.

Skills & Qualities

• Experience in conservation cleaning techniques is desirable.
• A reasonable degree of mobility and stamina as volunteers will be required to reach, lift, handle equipment as well as negotiate
steps and uneven surfaces.
• Willingness to wear protective equipment and follow health and safety guidelines.
• Willingness and ability to learn and use new information through instruction and relevant training courses.
• Ability to work independently and seek advice if required.

Please note: the task involves contact with dust. Individuals with asthma, chest complaints or allergies may not be suited to this role.

When & Where?

Ad hoc and flexible, at times to suit you.

Cathedral and its environs including the Cloisters, Foyer, Shop and Restaurant areas, The Chapel of the Holy Cross and The Priors Hall.

Training and Support Offered/Expenses

• Induction.
• Specialist training from our consultant Textiles Conservator.
• Written procedures manual supplied.
• National Church of England Safeguarding training (mandatory): The Church of England Basic Awareness (C0) online
safeguarding module should be completed when you start your volunteer role. Support for this is available.
• The Foundation Module (C1) should be completed as soon as possible and preferably within 3 months of starting your
volunteer role and is offered as an in-house group session. It needs to be refreshed every 3 years.

• Library & Collections Team including the Head of Collections and Exhibitions Officer.
• Volunteers Manager and Volunteer Administrator.

Durham Cathedral has been awarded the County Durham Kite Mark in volunteering (administered by Durham Community Action) which shows that it recognises the value of recruiting and retaining volunteers, works to overcome barriers to volunteering and is a place where volunteers receive a high quality, positive experience.

Unfortunately we are unable to offer expenses.

Volunteer Benefits

• Playing an important role in helping to maintain and preserve the fabric of the Cathedral.
• Training and working with an Accredited Textile Conservator.
• Being part of a passionate and dedicated team.
• References available on request.
• Being involved in the important life and history of Durham’s most iconic building and its sustainability for future generations.
• Opportunity to join the Cathedral’s Community Roll.
• Cloister Card offering 10% discount in the Cathedral Shop and Undercroft Restaurant (conditions apply).
• Refreshments.
• The opportunity to access other volunteering roles and training within the Cathedral.

Other Information

Recruitment is through an informal interview, induction and introductory period.

Due to severely limited space we are sorry but there is no parking available to volunteers in the Cathedral grounds unless agreed in advance.

Durham Cathedral takes the safeguarding and welfare of its staff, clergy, volunteers and visitors extremely seriously and will take immediate action in any circumstance where the safety and protection of children and vulnerable adults is at stake. It is expected that all staff and volunteers share this commitment.

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Durham Cathedral More information
Hours: Cathedral Office is open 09:00 - 16:30 Type: Museums/Heritage, Conservation/Environment, Faith/Religion
Recognition of Quality Volunteer Experience

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