Fancy being a 'Holy Duster' at Salisbury Cathedral?

Fancy being a 'Holy Duster' at Salisbury Cathedral?

Published by Mike Draper at 4:30am 14th September 2019.

4 minute read

It's just one of the amazing job titles that needs to be filled, along with more Tour Guides and Tomb Cleaners.

If you have got a few spare hours a week, or even time at the weekend, and would like to join the friendly and supportive team of award-winning volunteers at Salisbury Cathedral, now's your chance.

  • The Salisbury Cathedral Volunteer Guide Discovery Day is on Saturday 14 September
  • It starts at 4pm
  • Anyone can come along, no previous experience needed

To guide at the Cathedral, you'll need enthusiasm for being an ambassador for the Cathedral and a desire to share it with people from all over the world is enough. The Cathedral training team will do the rest.


Also among the roles, the Cathedral needs to maintain its team of Holy Dusters & Tomb Cleaners.

There are a range of opportunities for those wishing to get involved, full training is given to all those joining the volunteer team. Holy Dusters help to maintain the Quire Stalls and Chapels in the Cathedral.

A drone photo showing Salisbury Cathedral from an aerial view
Salisbury Cathedral is one of Britain's finest medieval cathedrals and has over 300,000 visitors each year.


If this sounds of interest to you (or other roles) contact Volunteer Co-ordinator Christine Keegan on 01722 555123 or email

SATURDAY 14th SEPT: The Volunteer Discovery Day starts with an introductory talk in Cathedral's lovely Chapter House, followed by special trip up to the West Window high above the Nave, and a tour of the historic graffiti. The day rounds up with glass of wine or a soft drink in the Chapter House and a chance to meet guiding team one-on-one.

Don't worry if you are still working. There are weekend shifts available and training is organised with the busiest of schedules in mind.

  • There are around 260 Cathedral Floor Guides in all
  • They work in 13 independent guiding teams
  • It's a mix of morning and afternoon shifts

The Cathedral only asks for potential guides to commit to one half-day session a week but enthusiasts are welcome to sign up for more if they want.

All guides undergo a seven day (spread over seven weeks) training course learning not just facts but other useful skills like voice projection and presentation.

A group tour with volunteer Guides at Salisbury Cathedral, photo by Malcolm Anderson.
Some perks of the role include discounts in the shop and Refectory, and free teas and parking when on duty.

Guides come from all walks of life and all age groups. Many develop their own specialism - stained glass, the medieval clock, the architecture - while others opt to become Welcomers, meeting and greeting visitors as they arrive. Others do the Floor tours, around two per four-hour shift, lasting between 40 and 60 minutes.


  • Salisbury Cathedral is one of Britain's finest medieval cathedrals.
  • Over 300,000 people visit the Cathedral each year
  • The Cathedral is nearly 800 years old
  • It has Britain's tallest spire.
  • The finest original copy of the 1215 Magna Carta is on permanent display to visitors in the Chapter House
Magna Carta display area in the Chapter House at Salisbury Cathedral.
The finest original copy of the 1215 Magna Carta is on permanent display to visitors in the Chapter House


In 2016 Salisbury Cathedral's volunteer group, which numbers around 650 and includes the Cathedral, Tower and Magna Carta Guides, received a Queens Award for Voluntary Service, the equivalent of an individual MBE. It recognizes the excellent service they give to the Cathedral congregation, visitors and the local community.

Salisbury Cathedral Volunteers - over 600 people give their time to support the life and activities of Salisbury Cathedral with 27 volunteer groups in all including:

Floor Guides, Stewards, Chaplains, Community, Tower Guides, Flower arrangers,
Holy Dusters & Tomb Cleaners, Shop, Embroiderers, Education Centre, Calligraphers,
Sunday school, Sunday Coffee, Lay Pastoral Assistants, Administrants & Servers, Healing team, Library

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