The festival is organised and staffed by members of CAMRA who are all unpaid volunteers. Without their help the festival would not and could not happen.
Volunteer staff are needed at all sessions of the beer festival, and also for setting up and taking down, so your help is needed - even if you can only manage a few hours. Every little helps!
Why Volunteer? Many of our volunteers return year after year because it's fun and friendly. As well as being a worthwhile experience, you get to help others appreciate good beer and cider. You also get the chance to taste a wider variety of beers and ciders than you would otherwise. As a volunteer, you'll get free beer or cider, food, and, if you volunteer for at least 8 hours, a festival polo shirt.
Who can volunteer? The festival encourages anyone to volunteer, even if you are not a member of CAMRA. All volunteers should be over the age of 18 years. Volunteer roles can normally be found for all capabilities.
When do we need Volunteers? From Saturday 11th to Sunday 19th February 2017. Set up is Sat 11th - Mon 13th Feb, with Wed 15th - Sat 18th Feb being open to the public. Take-down is Sun 19th Feb. Help is also needed before the 11th Feb to hand out publicity flyers. Please see WINTER Publicity Dates for details.
What areas need volunteers? There's a variety of areas that need volunteers both when we're open to the public, and when we're not. During set up and take down we need volunteers for general duties as well as specialist areas like cooling systems, cellar management, and transport. General set up duties include erecting stillage and bars, putting up signs, and putting out tables and chairs. For some aspects of set up and take down we require volunteers who are physically fit as the work can be demanding with heavy lifting. Where appropriate, tools and safety gear will be provided.
While we're open to the public, the festival is split into different working areas;
- Entrance; welcoming customers, taking money for admission and deposit for glasses, and handing out glasses.
- Glasses; giving back the deposit on returned glasses, boxing dirty glasses to be taken to the dishwasher, as well as loading and unloading the industrial dishwasher.
- Membership; encouraging customers to join CAMRA, and answering queries.
- Beer and/or Cider Bar; serving customers, helping them with their selection, taking money.
- Finance; moving money from the tills to the finance office, counting money and accounting.
- General Duties; which could include keeping the festival clean, taking deliveries, helping customers, and other odd jobs. Please note volunteers will not be required to clean toilets!
We especially need people for Entrance/Glasses and Finance.
Before they start work, volunteers will need to sign to say that they have read and understood the Staffing Guidelines, Health & Safety Handbook, Sale of Alcohol Rules, and Volunteer Charter (see links below).
We do have some areas where we need people to take on extra responsibilities:
1) We are looking for people to learn how to set-up and operate the beer cooling system. Full training will be given during set-up.
2) We are looking for people to learn beer (or cider) cellar management. Full training will be given during set-up.
3) We are looking for people to learn bar management (to act as a deputy initially). Training will be given during set-up.
If you are interested in any of the above, please contact Chris Rouse (details below).
Volunteering: The graph below (as of 10 Feb 2017) shows how many volunteers we have so far for each day of the festival. Please consider this when volunteering, as when we have too many volunteers for an area or day, we will ask people to volunteer for a different area or day.
If you would like to volunteer, please fill in the WINTER On-Line Volunteer/Staffing Form. To guarantee a polo shirt (if eligible) your form needs to be completed by Friday 20 January 2017. Forms will of course be accepted after this date (unless we are over-subscribed). You can fill the form in for other people if you have their details (and they know you are doing it of course!). It doesn't matter if you need to make some amendments after you have submitted your form, circumstances change for all sorts of reasons. You can email ku.gro.slavitsefredicdnareebdrofsmlehc@gniffatsfbw or text (or phone) Chris Rouse on 07824 726108 with any changes.
If you need a form for someone who cannot fill in the on-line staffing form, then please email Chris Rouse on the above email address.
Please read the Volunteer Charter or download and read the Volunteer Charter (.pdf) (for Acrobat) and make sure you understand it before arriving at the festival. The charter details both the responsibility of a volunteer, and CAMRA's responsibility to volunteers. All staff will be asked to sign a declaration that have read and will abide by our Volunteer Charter.
Please download the Staff Guidelines and make sure you read and understand them before arriving at the festival.
Download the Winter 2017 Staff Guidelines (.doc) (for MS Word 97 - 2003 or newer)
Download the Winter 2017 Staff Guidelines (.pdf) (for Acrobat)
Please download the Health & Safety Handbook for Beer Festival Volunteers (.pdf) (for Acrobat) and make sure you read and understand the guidelines before arriving at the festival.
There will be a Volunteers’ Briefing on Monday 13 February at 7.30pm. It is important that volunteers attend, especially first-timers. The briefing covers a number of key aspects of the festival, and gives you a chance to familiarise yourself with the layout, as well as meet bar/area managers and have a drink.
If you have any queries, please email Chris Rouse using ku.gro.slavitsefredicdnareebdrofsmlehc@gniffatsfbw or phone or text on 07824 726108.