Volunteering Roles at Compass Theatre and the Manor Farm Site
Compass Theatre is home to over 3000 items of costumes, which regularly get hired out to theatrical groups, schools and individuals. At present, the wardrobe opens on Wednesday evenings in term time and we would really benefit from opening on Saturday mornings as well but we have found it hard to find volunteers who can help at that time of the week.
Ickenham Hall, adjacent to Compass Theatre, has lovely gardens around the house, that are maintained by the Friends of Ickenham Hall. They have taken great interest and care to restore them to how they would have been planted in Georgian times, when the house was lived in. Sadly, the team of volunteers that helped restore the garden has dwindled recently and we need just one or two hours help a week over the summer to ensure the hard work already put in isn't wasted and the garden ruined.
The Wine Bar
This is a small, easy to run bar usually run by just one or two people depending on how full the shows are. Previous experience isn't vital and training will be given, and it's a great way to gain experience in bar work.
Here's are the other volunteer roles available...
Our Arts Ambassadors provide valuable, positive communication about our venues and events into their own communities and take publicity materials to relevant places.
If you have a particular skill or passion in the backstage theatre work then we would be grateful for your help. The usual times we require technical assistance is from 10am until 11pm on a Sunday, 6pm until 11pm on weekdays and 6pm until midnight on a Saturday. If you can’t make the entire shift you are still welcome to help out. You will work alongside LBH staff, who will help and advise where and when needed. If we cannot offer directly involvement with a particular production, we will do our best to put you in touch with the visiting company.
Work in the Box Office, based at Compass Theatre is divided into Daytime and Event shifts. The box office is manned by only one member of staff or volunteer at a time so full training is required before taking on a solo shift. No previous box office experience is necessary but having experience of working with computers, cash handling and the general public is an advantage.
The Box Office opens Mon to Fri 10.30am - 5pm and Sat 10am - 1pm. As well as responsibility for taking bookings and reservations using our computerised ticketing system, volunteers deal with general enquiries from visitors and callers so they meet many members of staff, customers and clients. We ask for experience in customer service along with a good telephone manner and the ability to work accurately with information. Daytime shifts are half days - either 10.30am to 1.45pm or 1.45pm to 5pm Monday to Friday or 10am to 1pm Saturdays. To ensure full cover we ask that once trained, volunteers provide regular shift cover.
If you aren't able to come in regularly you can still train to cover the box office for Event Shifts - but this training will take place during daytime shifts.Event shifts start an hour before the event starts and ends after the interval and are much busier and shorter than daytime shifts. We recommend Event Box Office operators do at least one shift per month so you can remain familiar with the system.
The Coffee Bar at Compass is open for most events. Often working as one of a pair, volunteers arrive an hour before the event starts to set up. The busiest time is during an interval so be prepared for the big rush. After the interval there can be a lot of clearing up to do, but our dishwasher takes most of the strain. To volunteer at the Coffee Bar you need good customer service skills, a warm and friendly manner, the ability to handle cash and the ability to occasionally work under pressure. You also need to be conscientious about hygiene.
Compass Kidz is a drama club for 4 to 7 year olds, held at Compass Theatre twice a month on Saturday mornings.. We run these sessions with volunteer tutors and volunteer assistants. The sessions teach a range of fun activities centered around drama, movement, voice exercises, mime, craft, singing, and dance. Sessions have a maximum of 14 participants and a minimum of 2 tutors per class. The tutors come under the direction of a Head Tutor, supported by the Compass Kidz Administrator who is first aid trained and on site during each session. Tutors must be able to plan and deliver classes themselves and have a natural affinity towards small children. Compass Kidz volunteers also help with school holiday workshops, run by a hired in workshop leaders.
Experience with teaching children of this age range is essential and in addition to the usual references all Compass Kidz volunteers will undergo an advanced CRB check.
At Compass Theatre, the volunteers play a big part in keeping the Ickenham Hall Georgian gardens in check. The Garden consists of a walled garden with lawns and surrounding borders, two narrow borders outside the front wall and two rectangular plots to one side of the wall. These have been dug over and planted with over 730 plants the Georgians would have known and used. This needs lots of care and attention to detail, regular weeding and in the dry months regular watering.
Sometimes we ask for help with small maintenance jobs. This volunteering is flexible and if you have a particular DIY skill or passion, then jobs can be allocated to you accordingly. You will work alongside staff, who will help and advise where and when needed. Work can be in or outdoors and all tools and materials are provided. You will need to be hardworking, conscientious, have a friendly and approachable manner and good organisational skills.
Manor Farm House
After extensive restoration, the historic Manor Farm Site in Ruislip has been open to the public since June 2008. The site comprises of a 13th century Great Barn, a 16th century Manor House, a 16th Century Little Barn and a Motte and Bailey. The site falls within the borough of Hillingdon’s Archaeological Priority Area and Ruislip Village Conservation area. Volunteers help run the interpretation centre located in the Manor Farm House and support the Education and Enrichment programme. The interpretation centre is a permanent multi-media exhibition, helping visitors to understand and explore the history of the site. Commitment times are flexible though some weekend working will be required. Volunteers should possess good customer service skills, a warm and friendly manner, enthusiasm, an interest in Heritage and the ability to work in a team.
Ushers are often the welcoming face of the theatre and are required to take tickets, show people to their seats, answer queries and provide information as well as assisting the Duty Manager in carrying out an evacuation of the premises in the event of an emergency. Training is provided immediately before every shift so ushers can work as frequently or infrequently as they like. Shifts begin an hour before the start of an event and ends once all the audience have left auditorium. Although ushers often see the events, some ushering duties require you to be outside the auditorium so we can’t guarantee that you’ll every event you work on. You will need to be physically fit, have good communication skills, a friendly and approachable manner and remain calm under pressure.
The Wardrobe at Compass Theatre has over 3000 items for hire and opens on Wednesday evenings from 8pm to 10pm during term-time. The wardrobe volunteers assist local theatre groups with costumes or help individuals with fancy dress. They needn't come every week and arrive at 7.45pm. They are led by an experienced wardrobe volunteer and don’t need to sew, but it’s very helpful if you can. There is some paperwork, cash and card handling skills required so experience of these are an advantage. You will also need good customer service skills, patience and a friendly manner.
It is useful but not essential to have had some prior bar experience and training is carried out on quieter nights. The bar usually opens for evening events and working as one of a pair, volunteers arrive an hour before the start to set up the bar. The busiest time is during the interval of the performance and we encourage customers to order drinks before the show. After the interval there is a lot of clearing up, but our glass washer takes most of the strain. On Fridays and Saturdays the bar might open after a show ends and on these occasions you will finish between 10.45pm and 11pm, otherwise the bar closes after the interval.
The skills you will need to do this role are; customer service skills, a warm & friendly manner, the ability to handle cash, work under pressure and be conscientious about hygiene.