dr. robert morrison
Why did you choose to volunteer with us? "Interest in medical history."
What sorts of activities do you undertake? "Inventory of books and the Museum's objects, photographs, etc. including accessioning of objects. [I particularly enjoyed] seeing the breadth of the collection and learning about the names and uses of instruments/objects [and] the connection to Worcester."
"I volunteered at the George Marshall Medical Museum and loved it. I loved the events, guided tours and outreach tasks as well as the collections work and exhibition planning and delivery. With the new skills, knowledge and confidence, I’m better placed to further my career in the heritage sector. The training has also been great. There wasn’t much to be honest that I didn’t enjoy..."
Mrs Muriel Clayson
"As I was familiar with the history of Worcester Royal Infirmary, I appreciated the George Marshall Medical Museum (GMMM) for some years before becoming a volunteer. My first volunteering was in Worcester Festival week Aug 2007. I "manned" the cholera table with quizzed and exhibits. I helped to celebrate 60 years of the NHS in 2008 and an exciting time in 2009 saw me teaching various nursing skills to Vamos Theatre Group prior to their Nursing Lives production. I provided bandaging, injections etc. and the Worcester Royal Infirmary Nurses' League provided anecdotes for their script.
"I continued to help when needed at GMMM until 2011 when the Infirmary Museum began to take shape. I then helped at both areas. At times I act as a guide to the Infirmary Museum and associated areas, Jenny Lind Chapel, Boardroom etc. This can be a learning time for me as visitors recount their experiences as patients or staff in the past.
"The 10th anniversary of the GMMM coincided with the 1st anniversary of the Infirmary Museum and I helped with League members to celebrate "birth days". Activities ranged from knitting bootees and bonnets for African neonates to demonstrating nappy-folding.
"I started on a history course at the University of Worcester because I am interested in history but I started volunteering at George Marshall because I wanted to work in museums in the future and I felt this opportunity would help me to develop the skills required to apply for such roles. And I was right. I have had the opportunity to learn lots of new skills and try out lots of different things and have enjoyed all the tasks I have tried as a volunteer. I am now even more committed to working in the heritage sector and thanks to the volunteering I have done here, as well as other volunteering I have done since in other museums and archives I am now starting a graduate traineeship at the Worcestershire Archives and Archaeology Service at the Hive, where I hope to learn even more about documents, how to store them, use them and share them.
"I have helped out at events at The Infirmary and The George Marshall, providing tours to visitors including dignitaries visiting for our opening event, and helping with children’s activities, either reading spooky stories to them, helping them to make different things, or designing trails around the museum or craft activities to help them to enjoy their visit. I enjoy this interaction with people and to be able to see how they enjoy their visit to the museums and learning about the history.
I have helped with collections, where we have spent a day as a team unpacking objects, working out what they are for, photographing them and recording them then repacking them for further storage – this appeals to my data management side, making sure we have the right data recorded for each object but also my curiosity at unpacking objects that people haven’t looked at for ages and trying to work out what they are for.
I enjoy meeting other people with similar interests to myself, whether they are other volunteers and we are working together or visitors who I get to share my knowledge and enthusiasm with. I enjoy learning new skills and then being able to put them to use and learning about the history of the Worcester Infirmary and the different medical instruments used. I like knowing that I have done something useful for the museums each time I help out."