Houses Inhabited

Costumed volunteer steward in Haddenham cottage at Chiltern Open Air MuseumHouses Inhabited is an Arts Council funded project to develop a team of volunteer costumed stewards at Chiltern Open Air Museum, with the aim of bringing the museum’s buildings to life with a variety of costumed inhabitants.

The project will provide a wide variety of volunteering roles with lots of opportunities to develop new skills and meet new people.

Working with a specialist consultant, we have developed characters narratives that help stewards to inform visitors on local history. Volunteers have the opportunity to take part in a training programme where they will learn traditional skills and crafts to help bring their characters to life and help create an immersive visitor experience. In addition to these traditional skills, they will also have the opportunity to attend customer service and accessibility training to ensure that when they steward they can be as welcoming as possible to all visitors.

The project has provided funding for materials for our team of volunteer costume makers to create new costumes as well as purchase some pre-made costumes.

Costumed volunteer steward in Henton Chapel at Chiltern Open Air Museum

Throughout the project we aim to foster a sense of co-curation between staff and volunteers to continually improve and develop our visitor experience. We want to grow and diversify our team of volunteers to reflect our community.

Volunteering Opportunities

  • Visitor Engagement Volunteer
  • Volunteer Costume Maker
  • General Steward

Whether you have a few hours or days to spare we would love for you to join us. Volunteers must be over the age of 18 years old and all costumes and training are provided.

If you would like to get involved in the project as either a costumed steward or costume maker then please contact Laura on

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