Rights Clearance Volunteer, Unlocking Our Sound Heritage

See below for details of our current volunteering opportunities at National Museums NI

Project Overview:

Unlocking Our Sound Heritage is an ambitious project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and led by the British Library in conjunction with ten national and regional partners across the UK. Unlocking Our Sound Heritage digitally preserve almost half a million endangered sound recordings from across the UK and make 100,000 available online transforming the visibility of sound archive collections in the process. National Museums NI is the hub for Northern Ireland. Over three years we will digitise 5,000 physical sound items, from our own collections, and from other collections within our area. The digitised material will then be used as part of a learning and outreach activity for the benefit of the people of Northern Ireland. We are looking for volunteers to support the cataloguing strand of the project.  


National Museums NI Headquarters, Cultra, BT18 0EU

Number of volunteers required: 

Approx. 2-3

Main Purpose and Role:

Cataloguing Volunteers will work alongside the Cataloguing Officer and the Project Manager to support the creation and amendment of catalogue records which will enable the discovery and access of digitised sound recordings for a wide range of audiences.

    • Carry out research which will assist with tracing rights holders in line with agreed rights clearance policies.
    • Listen to sound recordings to identify potentially sensitive content for further investigation by the Rights Officer who will decide whether the recordings can be made available online, onsite or not at all.
    • Keep a log of any actions taken in order to demonstrate due diligence, updating tracking tools and documentation as required.
    • Ensure any restrictions or conditions associated with collection items as defined by the Rights Officer are appropriately recorded.
    • Produce a blog or piece about your experience of being a Rights Clearance Volunteer for National Museums NI’s website.

Your time:

10am-4pm, Tuesdays or Wednesdays (we may be able to accommodate requests for half-days). 

Your skills and experience:

  • Accuracy – able to record information in a consistent and accurate manner.

    Detail-orientated – able to carry out repetitive tasks efficiently, whilst demonstrating a keen eye for detail.

    IT skills – comfortable and confident in using computer equipment in an office environment (PC and MS Office programmes).

    Commitment to skills development – an interest in developing knowledge and skills related to copyright clearance and sensitivity checking for oral histories, all within a heritage environment.

    Enthusiasm – an interest in working with audio content, in particular oral history recordings.

    Reliability – able to provide a regular commitment to our volunteering team.

Additional Information:

  • The role will require a minimum commitment of 1 day a week for a six month period (Tuesday or Wednesday). 

  • Volunteers will be asked to sign a non-disclosure agreement prior to starting. 
  • Volunteers will be supervised at all times. 


Complete the form below and one of the team will get back to you. 

Please put the title of the role you are interested in the “Additional Information” section.