Volunteer Stories - Nicola, Colin and Shirley

Posted on by Anita O'Donovan

In the run-up to our volunteer open day on 18th May, we're going to be sharing stories of our current and past volunteers, and what the experience has meant to them. Today, we're hearing from one of our married couples, Nicola and Colin, as well as Shirley, all who are some our current volunteers here at the Museum. 

We had been thinking of volunteering since we retired five years ago but only got around to it this year when we saw a post on Facebook about volunteer days at NCMME. Volunteering at the same place is purely practical - we only have one car – but we don’t volunteer together! We have different skills to offer and those skills can be used here.

My interest in the museum is a family one; most of the men on one side of my family were miners. On the other side they worked for Guinness but Dublin would be a long haul! I am interested in the people and in how their story is told. Colin’s interest is in the history of Caphouse, the buildings, links to other coalmines and the people and systems involved in the journey of the coal from pit to homes and industry.

We both enjoy talking to people and sharing stories; doing this here involves us in keeping the story of coal and colliers alive. - Nicola, a current NCM volunteer.

Are you thinking that you might like to volunteer at the National Coal Mining Museum but are hesitating because you are unsure how many hours you will be expected to do?

Not a problem. You offer the number of hours that suit you and the days on which you would like to do them. Flexibility is the word.

Is there an age limit? Is disability a problem? No and no! I am a very, very senior citizen and need to do quite a bit of my volunteering sitting down and there is still place for me. - Shirley, a current NCM volunteer.

If, like Nicola, Colin and Shirley you're keen to spend your free time helping out here at the Museum, then come along to our volunteer open day on 18th May from 10am - 2pm and learn about some of the volunteer roles that we offer, including roles as a nature volunteer, a family volunteer and a heritage volunteer. For more details, see https://www.ncm.org.uk/whats-on/volunteer-open-day.  

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