We have some exciting opportunities for volunteers to get involved in the Lightboxes and Lettering project, to help conduct and transcribe oral history interviews and do archival research into the print industry in east London. We will also need support at events and exhibitions for the project, and we hope that whatever your role with the project, you’ll be able to help with this as well. For all roles, an interest or experience of the print industry, particularly in east London, would be a bonus.

This is a short-term project, with limited funding, and so we’re looking for volunteers who can commit to the project timescales. We’re anticipating a lot of interest in these roles, and unfortunately, we won’t be able to include everyone who is interested in taking part in the project.


We’ll select volunteers using the information you provide on the application form and through an informal chat with you about your role and your interest in the project.


Oral History interviews

Number of volunteers 12

We want to record the experiences of current and former employees of the printing industry in East London, who worked in the industry prior to 1995. Training will be given by an Oral History Society recognised tutor and equipment and expenses will be provided. If we get our target numbers of volunteers, we’re expecting each person to record up to 4 interviews.

We also need volunteers to transcribe interviews and provide summaries of them.

Key dates and availability:


Oral history training: 25th or 27th July in Walthamstow


Oral history interviews will take place from August – October


Expected time per month: between 10 and 20 hours.


Required skills and experience:

Oral History Interviewers will need to be patient listeners who are interested in people, and with an ear for detail and confidence in steering the interview to the relevant subjects. Some experience of working with older people would be an advantage. You should be able to travel around east London, and possibly further afield. You must have some flexibility with your time to schedule interviews, which will mostly take place during the day on weekdays.

Transcription requires good written English, relatively fast typing speed and access to a home computer.

If you’ve completed oral history interviewing training within the last three years, we’ll discuss with you if you need to repeat the training again.


Archive research

Number of volunteers: 10

We’re looking for volunteers to assist with archive research at archives across London, to collate information and materials and to add to an index of available resources. We’ll be organising induction training and visits at some of the archives which hold relevant material. Archives we plan to explore include Tower Hamlets Archives, Vestry House Museum, Hackney Archives, St Brides Library, Bishopsgate Institute, and Metropolitan Archives.


Key dates and availability:

Archive research will take place from July – September

Planned workshop dates include: 3 July & 18 July in Clerkenwell / Islington

Expected time per month: between 7 and 15 hours.


Required skills and experience:

You will have some experience and knowledge of local history and archival research. You should have good written English and be computer literate to help summarise and collate the information. You should be able to travel to archives across east London and possibly further afield.


To apply as a volunteer please complete this form and we will contact you with further information.