Volunteer programme further information

Please note that information in this section relates to opportunities most of which are part of our in-person Edinburgh Fringe season. Owing to public health considerations, it may not be possible to operate a physical Fringe this year. For 2021 we will be offering a digital programme. We have some opportunities for voluntary roles as part of our digital programme, mostly in administration, press and marketing, box office, information and video technology, but these may be different the roles we would normally offer as part of the in-person Fringe season. We will look to reintroduce an in-person programme once this is once again both possible and appropriate.

Venue locations

We operate our programme of shows across multiple central Edinburgh venues. All venues are temporary, just set up for the Fringe in halls and rooms rented from their year-round owners. As we don’t have any permanent venues, our venues can change from year to year. Our recent venues include our Royal Mile venues C aquila at the Roman Eagle Lodge and C cubed at the Celtic Lodge, and C south at St Peter’s, Lutton Place. Previous C venues have included the former Odeon Cinema on Clerk Street, the SoCo Old Town Gap Site, and India Buildings on Victoria Street. We have also taken site-specific work to cellars, alleyways, graveyards and Craigmillar Castle.


The full Festival dates for 2020, for those who would like to take part in our technical training programme (also available to those in non-technical roles), and taking part in the full fit-up period are Monday 20 July to Friday 4 September.

Alternative starting dates for festival assistants, front of house and box office team members, and for technicians by arrangement are Saturday 25 July (taking part in the second week of the fit-up), Saturday 1 August (arriving just before we start technical rehearsals), or Saturday 8 August (arriving for the first weekend of the run). For Festival assistants and cover roles, we can accommodate other dates within the overal period. If you have an interest in technical/production roles, we can consider you for dates solely within the fit-up and get-out periods. If you are interested in press and marketing, in house or co-productions or events, administration or management, there can be opportunities in London in May, June, July and September. We will do our best to accommodate individual circumstances by arrangement.

Shifts and days off

Volunteer shifts during the run for most team members are typically around 8 to 10 hours. During the fit-up and get-out periods, shifts can be up to 12 hours, and on the few occasions we have overnight technical rehearsals, some shifts for some roles can be up to 13 hours. Shifts in some roles can vary. If you’re not at your best with long shifts, we will try and find alternatives. We allocate one day off during the fit-up for those attending the full fit-up period, half a day off for those attending only the last week of the fit-up, and three days off during the run for those staying for the full run period. We schedule reasonable breaks within shifts (typically one full hour or two half hour breaks within shifts of up to 10 hours, and more break time within longer shifts). We will always ensure that there is at least an 11-hour break between the end of one shift and the start of the next. We understand that as a volunteer you are free to offer your time whenever you want, however we request that you follow the schedule in order to be fair to the whole team, and let us know of any prior commitments, illness or other issues affecting your attendance. We will do our best to accommodate your preferences for days off and shift hours in our schedule, and to work around any prior commitments you may have. If you can only offer shorter attendance periods or shifts, we would still like to hear from you.

General considerations

We pride ourselves as having one of the friendliest and most professional teams of any Fringe venue, and on supporting our team members and visiting companies and artists. We request that you do your utmost to help us maintain this. If you experience issues with other team members, companies, or the public, or with our management, please come and talk to us so we can do what we can to resolve the problem. Should you feel unable to do this, you may also contact the Festival Fringe Society (participants@edfringe.com or 0131 226 0026) for advice. You can find more information at www.edfringe.com/take-part/your-rights.

Things to bring to Edinburgh

You will need to bring the following to Edinburgh with you: a pillow, sheets, sleeping bag/duvet and towel, old work clothes and sensible shoes. There is no dress code other than C venues t-shirts in some roles, however we recommend that technicians wear black and we ask those in front of house roles to wear clean clothes. If you have personal tools or equipment there is no need for you to bring them as we can provide tools and equipment as needed, however if you do bring personal items, please note that all items are brought at your own risk.


You will need to arrange your own travel to Edinburgh. However, if the cost of travelling to Edinburgh from within the UK prevents you from taking part, you can apply to our travel bursary scheme.


We welcome feedback on your volunteer role and how it could be improved. Please be aware that it may not be feasible to make changes during the Festival, but all feedback is considered at the end of the Festival and is instrumental in planning for the following year.

About us

C venues operates on a not-for-profit basis without public funding or major commercial sponsorship, and we work with volunteers to help deliver our season each year. Founded in 1992, C has grown from small beginnings to become one of the favourite venues on the Fringe. Our ethos is based around the C family of team members and performing companies: to create an environment where people from different backgrounds with an interest in the arts can meet, make creative work and see creative work together. Our alumni have gone on to work in professional theatre and the creative industries around the world, and our visiting performing companies and artists have gone on take their work to other festivals and venues worldwide.

Legal requirements

As a C venues team member you will need to agree not to disclose any confidential information concerning us or our clients, customers, suppliers or your fellow team members to any third party without our prior written authority; to follow our codes and operating and safety procedures; and to adhere to any recommendations and codes of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society applicable to Fringe participants. These include measures relating to harassment, bullying, confidentiality, public statements and social media. Please note that you must take reasonable care of any tools or equipment lent to you or provided for your use and return them on request.

Equal opportunities

C venues is committed to equal opportunities and welcomes applications from all sections of the community. We welcome applications from anyone, with any level of experience. Additional bursaries may be available to assist people with circumstances which would otherwise preclude them from taking part in this volunteering opportunity.

Accessibility/ disabilities

We will make every reasonable effort to accommodate people with access requirements or disabilities, however by their nature some of the venues are not fully accessible.


Information you provide to us, including any personal data, is stored digitally and is only accessible to a limited number of administrative team members. Team members’ names, mobile numbers and email addresses may be provided to other team members for operational purposes.


We provide public and employer’s liability insurance covering our volunteer team, however anything you bring to Edinburgh is at your own risk, and you are responsible for your own possessions. You may wish to hold insurance for items you bring to Edinburgh.

International participants

We are only able to offer places on our volunteer programme to people with the right to work in the UK, and we will ask for evidence of this before you start your placement. This includes British and Irish citizens, EU/EEA citizens with the right to work in the UK, and citizens of other countries with a visa or permit which allows work in the UK (currently this includes permanent residency/indefinite leave to remain, other applicable work visas, youth mobility/working holiday visas, and many full time student visas). Unfortunately we are unable to organise work visas for volunteer applicants.

The Fringe is a truly international experience, with artists and companies from all over the world. While we are unable to take international venue team members unless they have permission to work in the UK, there is an alternative route for people from outside the UK to experience the Fringe – attending as part of a performing company or artist’s support team, typically a company or artist from your home country, as opposed to volunteering with a venue. We can often put people from outside the UK in touch with performing companies and artists looking for support team, so please contact us about this if you are interested.