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HowTheLightGetsIn Hay 2019

Volunteer With Us

Volunteer With Us

HowTheLightGetsIn is the world’s largest and most exciting philosophy and music festival – and we need YOU to make it happen!

Volunteering at HowTheLightGetsIn is an amazing way to get involved with the process of turning our vision into a reality, as well an as opportunity for you to enjoy the festival itself with minimal costs.


Why should you get involved?

1. ACCESS. In return for their short daily shifts (typically between 5-6 hours), festival volunteers get a staff wristband giving them access to a whole range of debates, live music, film & comedy - not to mention insane discounts on the festival eateries and some of the visiting stall holders!

2. SKILLS & EXPERIENCE. Volunteering looks great on your CV and all of our volunteers can request a reference at the end of the festival for future employment. You'll get to network with festival organisers and gain an insight into the behind-the-scenes running of a large-scale event.

3. FUN. The team is always diverse, welcoming and up for having a lot of laughs, as well as working well together to keep the festival ticking. A lot of our volunteers come back year after year to have reunions and see the same friendly faces they got to know their first year volunteering.



HowTheLightGets Hay 2019 is set in a magical location on the edge of the Black Mountains, alongside the river Wye in the famed book town of Hay!

Newport St, Hay-on-Wye, Hereford HR3 5BG



What roles are available?

  • Being a steward is the best way to see as much of HowTheLightGetsIn as possible whilst being instrumental in the smooth-running of the festival. A steward’s role is by far the most varied, covering a range of responsibilities from managing queues and crowds to working the box office or turning over venues between events. You’ll gain a thorough understanding of the inner workings of a festival, whilst being immersed in all the wonderful events HowTheLightGetsIn has to offer.

    What skills would I need?

    Our stewards need to be reliable, responsible, and friendly. We’re looking for applicants who are confident engaging with lots of people, and are on-the-ball and alert. Experience stewarding at other events is preferable but not necessary.

    When would I be working?

    Training: Thursday 23rd May (morning)
    Volunteering days: Friday 24th - Monday 27th
  • Our publicity team is the front line of HowTheLightGetsIn, and are integral for the success of the festival. The publicity team is responsible for the promotion of the festival in the town of Hay itself, engaging with the general public and encouraging them to give us a visit by supplying information. This might be by interacting with local businesses, manning the publicity base, or simply giving out flyers. It’s a fun and active way to immerse yourself in the spirit of both the festival and the Hay-on-Wye community.

    What can I bring to HowTheLightGetsIn?

    To be part of the publicity team you need to be a confident speaker, happy to speak with passers-by and give clear information or directions. Most importantly, we’re looking for people who are enthusiastic about HowTheLightGetsIn, so that they can best engage with the public!

    When would I be working?

    Training: Thursday 23rd May (morning)
    Volunteering days: Thursday 23rd May - Monday 27th May
  • HowTheLightGetsIn needs a strong team to build and maintain the many areas within the huge festival site. Being part of our site team involves construction, pack-down, and general maintenance of the site before, during, and after the festival. If you have a background in construction or are a dab-hand at DIY, we would love to hear from you!

    What can I bring to HowTheLightGetsIn?

    We’re looking for those with experience in construction, carpentry, or maintenance. Our site team need to have these relevant skills in order to put together a site that is safe, so we ask that you only apply if you have a knowledge of construction.

    When would I be working?

    Training: Monday 20th May
    Volunteering days: Monday 20th - 29th May
  • Our site would be nothing without the efforts of our artistic contributors. Signs are a crucial component of any event, but they are also the simplest way you can make your mark on our festival. Whether you are creating beautiful menus or signposts, being a sign writer truly allows you to contribute to the décor and aesthetics of the festival.

    What can I bring to HowTheLightGetsIn?

    We’re looking for someone with both artistic vision and immaculate execution. Our sign writers need to bring creativity and originality to their design, but also produce signs which are clear and beautiful so that our guests don’t get lost!

    When would I be working?

    Training: Monday 20th May
    Volunteering days: Monday 20th - Friday 24th May
  • This voluntary opportunity is to work as part of the accommodation team on the riverside site, offering first class customer service to our luxury glampers and campers. Responsibilities will include checking guests in and out and ensuring they have everything they need during their stay. The role will also require carrying out of admin tasks, checks and feeding back to the Accommodation Manager.

    What can I bring to HowTheLightGetsIn?
    You will be friendly and welcoming, used to juggling multiple tasks at once. Preferably (but not essentially) you will have customer service experience - and even better if that experience has been reception based.

    When would I be working?
    From 22nd May 2018 – 2nd June 2018

    Shifts will be no longer than 8 hours, a mixture of mornings and afternoons and you will get a full day off during the festival to go and enjoy yourself!


"I want to express my sincere gratitude for the stewarding experience you have offered us: it has been nothing short of transformational! Although it was the first time I volunteered for a festival, I am already stewarding with another one this weekend!" - Madalina Benderschi, Florence, Italy

"Thanks so much for the opportunity to work with you guys at the festival. It was so much fun - would love to be involved again next year!"Katie Poundall, London, UK

"I was honoured to serve for this wonderful event as a steward. I booked months ago, flew from China for 11 hours (!) and found that it was so, so worth it!!" Luyao Zhang, Hong Kong, China


How to Sign Up

Every Festival Volunteer pays an honesty bond of £50 to secure their place, which is refundable after the successful completion of all shifts. Please note the honesty bond is non-refundable if you drop out within a month of the festival.

1. Select the option(s) for volunteering that most appeals to you and let us know your skill set.

2. Pay the honesty bond to let us know you’re serious!

3. The HTLGI team will be in touch to confirm your volunteering role


Enquire Now

Select you preferred role(s)

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