Irish Heritage Trust Volunteering Programme

The support, passion, and commitment of our Irish Heritage Trust volunteers help make Ireland’s heritage properties engaging, accessible, and exciting places to visit.

Every year, our extraordinary volunteers contribute their time, skills, and enthusiasm to the Irish Heritage Trust in all sorts of practical ways. Our staff appreciate their support and insights, just as much as visitors love the authentic welcome and the local knowledge they share.

The award-winning Irish Heritage Trust volunteering programme ensures we can conserve and share access to some of Ireland’s most prestigious properties, museums, and collections in perpetuity. It also helps to strengthen relationships between local communities and the historic properties in their midst.

Why get involved with Irish Heritage Trust volunteers!

  • Connect with, and learn more about, Ireland’s heritage and local history.
  • Share your passion for your area and deepen your understanding of where you live.
  • Build new friendships in your local community and beyond.
  • Develop new skills and discover new hobbies.

Choose the right volunteer role for you

Are you keen to get your hands dirty in our kitchen gardens and formal flowerbeds? Or would you prefer to help us share amazing stories with our visitors from Ireland and beyond?

Whether you’re more at home chatting about the past, fixing a piece of furniture, or marshalling guests at our varied events, we can match you to a role that suits you.

Meeting people, sharing stories

  • Tour guiding.
  • Supporting the visitor experience.
  • Acting as an event ambassador.
  • Sharing or collecting oral histories and reminiscences.

Conserving and

  • Conserving and restoring our houses, gardens, and collections.
  • Gardening and horticulture.
  • Encouraging biodiversity.

Working with us behind the scenes

  • Event planning and support.
  • Photography and videography.
  • Marketing and promotion.
  • Community outreach and much more!
“Volunteering at Fota is a really positive, enjoyable experience. It’s been great spending time with the other volunteers, from whom I learn a lot, and whose company I enjoy. Interacting with people who come to visit, bringing the story of Fota to life, is rewarding and stimulating. My work in the house or the walled garden has deepened my interest in nature, history, and gardening, and led to a new interest in the history of gardening. Every day of volunteering is a joy.”
Catherine Coakley, Volunteer at Fota House, Arboretum & Gardens
Two women tending to flowers in glasshouses
Four female volunteers working in historic kitchen
12th Oct 2023 No Reproduction Fee Irish Heritage Trust volunteers Strokestown Park House, Gardens & National Famine Museum Pic Shows Photo Brian Farrell

Volunteer Training and Support

If you’d like to volunteer with the Irish Heritage Trust, we won’t push you into one of our ornamental pools at the deep end! You’ll be invited to attend an induction workshop where you can meet the team, find out more about the Irish Heritage Trust, and learn about roles that are available for you to try.

We also provide further training, if it is needed, and opportunities for you to talk to and learn from our experienced staff and volunteers. Every month, our local teams in Wexford, Cork, and Roscommon hold forums where staff and volunteers share information and ideas or take advantage of additional training. Our teams take occasional trips to other properties and hold social events too.

How Do I Get Started?

If you would like to volunteer at an Irish Heritage Trust property, please contact us at

Martina Carroll – Fota House, Arboretum and Gardens, Cork.

Jess Sinnott – Johnstown Castle Estate, Museum & Gardens, Wexford.

Ciara McCormac – The National Famine Museum | Strokestown Park, Roscommon.

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