Volunteer Stories: Patrick & Gordon

Although they are a small team of two, Historic Environment Scotland Visitor Connectors Gordon and Patrick make a big impact with their passion for Huntly Castle and also in how they care about the community and visitors as part of the castle team.

Patrick and Gordon smile in front of Huntly Castle.

Gordon and Patrick have an authentic and tangible passion for sharing community history and heritage with visitors both locally and from all over the world. Patrick has been welcoming visitors to Huntly Castle since 2017. Through his passion for great service, he helped us to develop the volunteer role and mentored Gordon when he joined in 2020.

During 2022 it became apparent that Gordon and Patrick not only enjoy sharing the history of the castle but care greatly about the people of Historic Environment Scotland, our visitors, and their community. They grew as a team, turning up in all kinds of weather with their matching tweed hats and smiles, Highland hospitality, and fascinating stories. No matter the visitor, they take time to get to know them and their interests, overcome language barriers, and adapt tours for accessibility for a bespoke and memorable experience for everyone who visits.

Last year, when personal circumstances of staff who support Gordon and Patrick in their volunteering unexpectedly changed, Gordon and Patrick’s first reaction was: “how can we help?” They both knew that being a friendly face and providing the warmest welcome through their tours is part of what makes Huntly Castle special, so they started to volunteer more often. Having Gordon and Patrick out and about at the castle reassured the castle team at a challenging time.

The passion for Huntly that Gordon and Patrick share with visitors goes far beyond the walls of the castle. They care deeply about their local community, which comes across through both their relationships at the castle and their words to all who meet them. They may be a small volunteer team, tucked away in a quiet corner of the Scottish Highlands, but we feel that the joy and support that Gordon and Patrick share with colleagues, visitors, and the community is something to be celebrated.

Thanks to Gordon and Patrick for their immense contributions to Historic Environment Scotland!

Are you interested in volunteering with museums, galleries, archives, zoos, parks, historic sites and other historical, cultural and nature organisations in Scotland? Check out the Make Your Mark in Volunteering portal to see what’s available in your area.

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