Welcome Volunteer

Durham City

To support the important and long Benedictine tradition of welcoming everyone to the Cathedral. Being visible and available to engage, inform and assist visitors. To support the smooth operation of the building.

As a key part of the front of house team of staff and volunteers you will be asked to play a proactive and dynamic role in ensuring that Durham Cathedral builds and maintains its reputation as one of the most welcoming and best loved attractions in the region and beyond.

We would be particularly pleased to hear from volunteers with availability to help us on Saturday afternoons.


• Ensuring a consistent welcome, actively engaging with visitors when appropriate to inform and delight.
• To be an ambassador for the Cathedral.
• Deal with visitor requests for assistance and information, enhancing the visitor experience and adding a personal touch.
• Help to promote awareness of the visitor offer in terms of activities and events.
• Discreetly and tactfully advise visitors who are in breach of Cathedral policies.
• Help staff to maintain an overview of the safety and well-being of visitors and the building, including following procedures in, for example, health and safety, safeguarding and security.
• Assisting with the safe and efficient flow of people when entering, inside and leaving the building.

Skills & Qualities

• A pleasant, polite, calm and welcoming manner.
• Respect and sensitivity towards all nationalities, religions, beliefs, cultures and backgrounds and the ethos of the Cathedral as a working church. You do not have to be religious but just empathic to the organisation's purpose of being a working church as well as a visitor attraction.
• Articulate with excellent communication skills.
• Discreet and observant of visitor behaviour.
• Ability to work in a team.
• Reliable, conscientious and a good time keeper.
• Flexible and adaptable.
• Tact and diplomacy.
• A good degree of mobility and stamina as volunteers will be required to stand, sit, walk as well as negotiate steps and uneven surfaces.
• Willingness to learn about the Cathedral past, present and future, extending your knowledge for visitors’ queries and to proactively support a visitor’s experience.
• The ability to deal with crowds.

When & Where?

The Cathedral is open Monday – Sunday:
Mon. – Sat. shifts are 09:30-13:00 and 13:00- 16:30, plus up to 20:00 during some summer months (optional).
Sun. shifts are 12:00-15:00.
Two shifts per month is encouraged but we are also flexible and wish to encourage any donation of time.

Cathedral and its environs including the Cloister, Foyer, The Chapel of the Holy Cross and The Priors Hall.

Training and Support Offered/Expenses

• Induction and shadowing more experienced volunteers.

• National Church of England Safeguarding training (mandatory): The Basic Awareness module and Foundation module (refreshed every three years) of this online safeguarding course must be completed before you start your volunteer role. They can be accessed at https://safeguardingtraining.cofeportal.org/ and a copies of your certificates are required as part of your induction. If you would like support with online access or you have been affected by any of the content, please just let us know as help is available. This is a useful general overview that can be used in other settings.

A range of optional training is available which may support on both a personal and professional level.

• Senior Welcome Stewards.
• Volunteers Manager
• Visitor Experience Team.

Volunteers and staff cooperate proactively to create a dynamic front of house team.

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

• Meeting a wide range of people from all over the world.
• Being part of a passionate and dedicated team.
• Experience in a visitor focused role.
• References available on request.
• Being part of some of the key events in the Cathedral’s liturgical calendar and involvement in the important life and legacy of Durham’s most iconic building.
• Cloister Card offering 10% discount in the Cathedral Shop and Undercroft Restaurant.
• Refreshments.
• The opportunity to access other volunteering roles within the Cathedral.
• Various optional volunteer training as available.

Other Information

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.

Durham Cathedral Logo
Durham Cathedral More information
Type: Museums/Heritage, Reception/Customer Services, Faith/Religion
Recognition of Quality Volunteer Experience

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