Long-time volunteer Alex Williams recently “hung up his lanyard” after nearly a decade with The Met. In this blog post he talks about what he’s taken away from the experience.

Why did you decide to volunteer?

I’ve attended The Met as an audience member since the 1990s. During the first Ramsbottom Festival in 2011 I was chatting to Nathan, the Events Manager, and he mentioned volunteering. I applied to volunteer at the 2012 Festival and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. That led to me applying to volunteer at The Met, to enable me to experience a diverse range of live music, throughout the year.

First concert as a volunteer?

Dick Gaughan in September 2012.

…and your final one before standing down?

The Manfreds in March 2020 – a week before the beginning of the first Coronavirus lockdown.

Favourite concert?

Loads of memorable nights. If pushed I’ll pick two. The Unthanks at Ramsbottom Festival 2013. And Caravan at The Met in 2019. I first saw Caravan play live at The Marquee Club in London in 1973. It was great to see them again, close to home, so many years later. (Caravan are due back at The Met in October this year. I plan to be there)

Other highlights?

I always enjoy the Mr. Kite Benefit concerts promoted by Steve Henderson. An opportunity to see USA based artistes who rarely play in the UK. My particular favourites include Richard Shindell, Lucy Kaplansky, Eliza Gilkyson, Mary Gauthier and Anais Mitchell. And every event is in aid of charity.

Nearly Dan and Manc Floyd (featuring The Met’s own Chris McClung). Regulars who always guarantee a great night.

On another occasion I got the opportunity to introduce Andy Kershaw before he went on stage!

Any regrets?

Only that I did not take the opportunity to volunteer at theatre events in addition to music concerts.

Would you recommend volunteering at The Met?

Yes – 100%. I massively enjoyed my nine years at The Met. From the outset the in- house team were welcoming, supportive and inclusive. They always made me feel appreciated, when in fact it was I grateful to them for providing the opportunity to be involved “on the inside”, and see acts free of charge who I would otherwise have been happy to pay to watch. We are so fortunate having the The Met on our doorstep. It’s an internationally recognised venue where artistes love to appear and return to.

…and finally

As I “hang up my volunteer lanyard”, I am very much looking forward to frequent visits to enjoy concerts at The Met, being able to keep in touch with the fabulous in-house team. Enjoying a couple of pints of real ale, listening to some of my favourite music, in a wholly relaxed atmosphere, is indeed an attractive prospect.

Alex Williams – May 2021

Interested in becoming a volunteer?

Our volunteers support the front of house staff with a number of areas during our events. The main roles include; scanning tickets, showing customers to seats, and being a friendly face around the building. Roles can vary depending on the event, but generally all we ask for is a positive attitude and a smile on your face.

Our volunteers are an integral part of what we do at The Met and we’d love to hear from you if you’d like to join the team.

Find out more