Volunteer at Below the Blanket

22 July – 25 August 2019

This year Cryptic marks 25 years of ‘ravishing the senses’ and we’ll be celebrating with events throughout the year including Below the Blanket, a series of new artworks installed throughout the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, inspired by one of Scotland’s most extraordinary and unsung natural features.  

The Flow Country is the world’s largest blanket bog, a vast mass of peat and Sphagnum moss, shot through with hundreds of lochs, that covers 200,000 hectares in Caithness and Sutherland. Home to many rare animals, birds, insects and plants, the peat also acts as a natural store for carbon, helping to offset the effects of climate change.

Artists Kathy Hinde, Luci Holland, Hannah Imlach, Heather Lander, Matthew Olden and composer Malcolm Lindsay have made work responding to the Flow Country’s wildlife and soundscape, the gradual process of peat formation, and even the way the blanket bog ‘breathes’ as it expands and contracts. Visitors to the gardens will encounter artworks that are evocative, contemplative and beautiful – and will come away enlightened about this unique Scottish landscape. 

Below the Blanket is presented as part of The Peatland Partnership’s Flows to the Future Project led by the RSPB Scotland.


We are looking for reliable and enthusiastic volunteers who are keen to work alongside the Cryptic team to help us deliver this unique, outdoor event at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh as part of The Edinburgh Fringe.

It is important to us that all our volunteers gain skills and experiences that will be useful to them in the future, get to know Cryptic and the artists we work with and have an enjoyable and memorable experience. We encourage people from all different backgrounds and with a variety of previous experiences to apply. However, there are some qualities we would like all volunteers to have:

  • Enthusiastic, reliable and flexible;
  • Friendly personality with good communication skills and initiative;
  • An interest in contemporary culture;
  • Able to commit to the event for the allocated time;
  • At least 18 years of age.


The role

Volunteers at Below the Blanket will be assisting the Cryptic team with front of house and stewarding duties. This is a customer facing role and will provide volunteers with experience in box office and audience evaluation. We are looking for enthusiastic people with good communication skills to welcome and engage audiences and assist the Cryptic team in the handling of customer information enquiries. These volunteer opportunities will provide an overview of how an outdoor, public event is run and managed.

In the run up to and during Below the Blanket, volunteers will be fully supported by the Cryptic team, have a dedicated point of contact and given clear guidance on their role.


These roles are voluntary, but the following benefits are available for volunteers:

  • We will be flexible about your working arrangements in the understanding that you are providing your time for free and may have other work or study commitments;
  • We will work with you to offer a challenging, useful experience that helps develop skills you are seeking;
  • We will provide tickets to attend Below the Blanket for free. This is to be agreed in advance and is dependent on availability;
  • We can give you a glowing reference if your work is of a high quality and you are reliable;
  • You will join a collective of talented, exciting people with which to make friends and contacts.


For more information and to apply please contact Rachel Hendry at crypticprojects@gmail.com or call +44(0)141 354 0544:


Cryptic is an equal opportunities organisation and welcomes all applications. We will work with all applicants to ensure their access needs are met and will ensure that access requirements are not a factor in our decision making.

Equal Opportunities Monitoring Form 2019