When I read about this, I instantly had a flashback to a similar an instance with a teacher and a full class of 30 kids, which I may now be tempted to render in cartoon....
This is absolutely, utterly, not a dig at the many thousands of volunteers without whom so many venues and services wouldn't be able to remain open and functioning.
This is a conglomerate of the tales I have been told where volunteer staffing has increased, and the existing paid staff have suffered with mismanaged hand overs, miscommunication and outright false promises.
Paid staff with years of expertise, experience, stores of knowledge, thousands of pounds of education, seeing their positions packaged into chunks and those chunks handed over to volunteers (some of whom also posses all those qualities, yet can't get paid work) until they are left staffing tills, cleaning, and providing security detail. Paid staff reassuringly told that "we won't be replacing you, you will still have a job!" and slowly finding that their role now only features the tasks that managers can't attract volunteers to.
Yes, many venues need the voluntary help, but it has to be properly, honestly, decently managed.
It’s been a bit quiet around here, and I feel it’s worth explaining, rather than just letting the dust gather.
The reasons are threefold really.
I’m told less and less about the fantastic kids a FOH worker dealt with, or the comedic actions of colleagues, and more and more about the frustrations. The sad side of staff feeling undervalued, overworked and under-resourced by an increasingly financially squeezed workplace. Or outright redundant, and now scrabbling for one of the few paid roles remaining.
When looking for advice and support online about recording a collection, and creating accompanying documentation, from almost scratch:
Most Sources: Hire a trained Archivist.
Me: Do you think I'd be searching the internet if that was an option?
If you're looking for a small local history museum, perfectly set up to bring in the locals, and inform the casual visitor, by golly Banbury Museum seems to be on form.
I took a short walk along the Oxford canal from Banbury train station, and just as I was starting to mentally grumble at the modern shopping centre unceremoniously dumped beside the canal, I found the museum café entrance. At this point I gave my grumble a quick realign, as there seems to have been a lot of thought put into making the museum an easily reached and enticing prospect for passers by, including the museum gift shop actually being inside the shopping centre. The building being packed with excited families, ambling couples, brunch munching OAPs and tea sipping dog walkers, the intentions seem to work.
If a contractor drops a tool during extensive conservation work, and there's a guided hard hat tour near by, does anyone hear it?
This is an abbreviated version of a much longer moment, where a gent convinced his increasingly impressed other half that yes, he had learnt to read "hireglifs" in school, and it had stuck in his brain ever since, because it was so interesting.
The look on her face when he hit his punchline was fantastic.
Another cartoon from an interaction observed at the Charles I art exhibition - I keep suddenly remembering more gems!
Webcomic and occasional blog about the heritage sector.
Share The Attendant:
Follow The Attendant:
All text and images are produced by and copyright of the artist, holder of the domain name of attendantsview.com