A day in the life of volunteer Barbara Leigh

Volunteer, Chartwell

Barbara - Volunteer
Visitors on the lawn outside Chartwell, Kent
9am: I set off to drive from home in Essex to Chartwell, crawling along the M25 hoping the bridge won’t be too clogged up. When I get to Chartwell, the day starts with a glorious walk through the gardens to the house. You have to ring the doorbell to be let in, which always makes me smile
10.30am: All the stewards meet for a coffee and the day’s briefing in Lady Churchill’s dressing room. We’re told about anything connected with the house or family that has been in the news, that we might be asked about, or if there’s filming or any big groups coming to visit.
We’re allocated the room we’ll be working in. My favourite is the study, you can really imagine him in there
11am: The morning shift is from 11.00 – 2.00. We get another break mid-morning, time for another coffee. I love stewarding, I’ve not been asked too many weird or wonderful questions, probably the most unusual was ‘What hat size was Churchill?'
2pm: Unless there’s an event on, or something special to keep me there longer, I head for home to try to beat the traffic – it has taken 2 ½ hours before!