THOSE with a love for Bournemouth are being urged to volunteer their time to help at a new festival heading for the town.

Bournemouth Tourism has teamed up with Bournemouth University to launch the Festival Makers scheme, giving people a chance to be part of the Bournemouth Wheels Festival from May 24-26.

The idea is modelled on the London 2012 Olympic Games Makers, who were an army of volunteers that made the sporting extravaganza tick.

Locals are being invited to experience the town’s festivals – including the Air Festival and Arts by the Sea Festival as well as the new Wheels Festival – close up by becoming volunteers, to undertake a variety of roles to inform and guide visitors.

The Festival Makers programme is sponsored by the Town Centre Business Improvement District (BID) and Coastal BID.

Lisa Tucker, chairman of the Town Centre BID, said: “This is a brilliant opportunity for local people who are passionate about their town to not only enjoy the major events which take place but also to feel proud to be part of them. It will not only be an amazing experience but people will also have a good story to tell about how they were there and involved.”

Des Simmons, chairman of Coastal BID and festival title sponsor, added: “The Games Makers were fantastic in helping make London 2012 Olympic Games a big success. We’d encourage any local Games Makers to apply and bring a great Festival Spirit to Bournemouth for the inaugural Bournemouth Wheels Festival.”

Volunteers will be given training, with the customer service element provided by the National Coastal Tourism Academy.

Dr Debbie Sadd, Bournemouth University’s Festival Makers Co-ordinator, said: “To become a Festival Maker is a great and invaluable experience for our event management students who will be able to see what they’ve learnt in practice by being part of a major festival attracting 360,000 plus visitors to the town.”

Anyone aged 18 or over can apply. Email festivalmakers@ from Monday, March 3, until March 26. Volunteers will then be sent an application form to complete.