Lace Hill, Tourist Information Centre and Chandos Park Toilets to reopen 4th July

Lace Hill Sports and Community Centre

The Lace Hill Community Centre has been closed since the beginning of the lockdown. The Centre will now open for hirers who can meet the current guidelines. Unfortunately, we are not yet allowed to open centre for sporting activities, or to open the changing rooms. A range of safety measures have been put in place, including ensuring hirers can maintain social distancing, and an additional cleaning regime. It is hoped that most hirers will return by September.

Tourist Information Centre

The Tourist Information Centre, in the front of the Old Gaol, will also reopen from Saturday 4th July. The Centre will now be open 7 days a week; it was agreed earlier in the year to trial summer opening on Sundays to improve the service to weekend visitors to the town. Measures have been put in place to prevent and reduce any risks. Queries can also be made via phone during opening hours: 10am-4pm on 01280 823020.

Buckingham Shopmobility is still closed until further notice.

Chandos Park Toilets

After the reopening of most other public toilets in Buckingham on Thursday 18th June, we’re pleased to announce that the toilets in Chandos Park will also be fully reopened from Saturday 4th July.

Additional measures have been put in place to ensure they are as safe as possible for use. An additional daily clean has been introduced and high visibility signage will be prominent, advising users to thoroughly wash their hands and to maintain social distancing in accordance with the government guidelines.

Play areas to reopen Saturday 4th July

Buckingham Town Council are pleased to announce that from Saturday 4th July the play areas owned by the Town Council will be reopened, along with the Tourist Information Centre and Lace Hill Community Centre.

Play Areas

The Town Council’s play areas in Bourton Park, Chandos Park, Otters Brook, by the Lace Hill Community Centre and next to Meadway (Ken Tagg) will all be opened, along with the adult gym equipment in Bourton Park.  Government guidance makes this possible from Saturday. There will be signs at each area asking everyone to be aware of the risks and to take note of the guidance displayed by the equipment:

The equipment will not be cleaned daily – the Council does not have the resources to do this.  So parents or carers may wish to wipe equipment down before using it, and should always provide hand gel for children after use.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • Try to maintain a 2 metre distance, except for from people of the same household
  • Wait at a safe distance, and if the equipment is in use return later
  • Anyone who has coronavirus symptoms, or is part of a household where somebody does, should not use the equipment
  • If you are wearing a disposable mask or gloves throw it away after use or take it home with you; DON’T LITTER.
  • Anyone who is clinically vulnerable should not use the equipment.

 

The Council has carried out a full safety inspection of the all play equipment to get ready for the reopening.  Unfortunately, some of the wooded items at Otters Brook are no longer safe due to internal rotting.  These have been taped off until repairs can be made.

Re-Opening of Public Toilets in Buckingham

Changing Place Toilet Cornwalls MeadowBuckingham Town Council are pleased to announce that from Thursday 18th June the Public toilets will be re-opened in Cornwall’s Meadow along with the disabled accessible toilets in Chandos Park.
Additional measures have been put in place to ensure they are as safe as possible for use. An additional daily clean has been introduced and high visibility signage will be prominent inside and outside each cubicle, advising users to thoroughly wash their hands and to maintain social distancing in accordance with the government guidelines.
At this time the male and female toilets in Chandos Park will remain closed due to the difficulty in keeping the communal areas safe. This will be kept under review and the Town Council aim to re-open these facilities as soon as it is safe to do so.
The Disabled accessible toilets in Chandos Park will be opened from Thursday, as this is a single cubicle, and can be accessed with a RADAR key which is sometimes referred to as the National Key Scheme (NKS). This is a nationwide scheme that offers people with disabilities independent access to locked public toilets around the country.
Councillor Ruth Newell, Chair of the Environment Committee added that she was “pleased that the Town Council was able to re-open their toilet facilities, to assist the public as they use the increasing number of re-opening shops and businesses.”

Buxplore: Buckingham heritage walks and audio tours by app!

Looking for things to do in Buckingham?

Need a reason to try Buxplore? Wild or stately, industrial and rural – Buckingham is an ancient town with many secrets hidden behind timber and brick walls. Buxplore was built to help residents and visitors discover more about Buckingham.

Not one of the hundreds of people have tried Buxplore since it launched three weeks ago? Here are six reasons to give it a go!

1. Free Buckingham kids activities

We know it’s been a long time since March and families are looking for new ideas for things to do in Buckingham. Buxplore is fun and interactive, the perfect way to be active and sneak in a homeschooling history lesson. Heritage for Kids is a fantastic trail to get the whole family hooked. Starting at the Chantry Chapel, explore the oldest parts of Buckingham – find, touch and imagine icons from Buckingham’s thousand year history.

This short route passes by Chandos Park – the perfect place to stop for a picnic.

two children touching the ammonite on Bristle Hill

2. Guided audio tours of Buckingham

With clear maps flagging locations to explore and audio options, these routes are really easy to follow with all the benefits of an audio tour without a clunky device to carry around. Simply use your mobile phone to access the app (don’t forget to turn on your mobile data and location tracking) then head out to the first stop on your chosen route.

3. Learn and explore Buckingham’s wild spaces from Bourton Park to Buckingham Canal

Connect with nature and learn more about Buckingham parks and the river Great Ouse. This explorer route is designed to be explored a little at a time, the perfect way to find some of the hidden green spaces you might not know about. Most of this trail is well away from roads with child friendly activities to try at every stop!

For photography fans this route offers fantastic opportunities to take photographs of wildlife including kestrels, wild flowers and the most beautiful parts of the River Great Ouse.

4. There’s been a murder! Can you solve the puzzles and find the culprit?

Tried all the online escape rooms? Buckingham murder mystery trail is a totally free interactive detective mystery. Start on Moreton Road at the Old Police Station and meet Sergeant William Jeeves! Solve puzzles to unlock new locations and discover clues as you take a tour around the murkier side of Buckingham history.

Don’t worry – hints are available if you get stuck and there are plenty of places to stop for fantastic food on the way around! Not in Buckingham? Turn on virtual mode to take part wherever you are.

Old Police Station Buxplore

5. Discover Buckingham Walks from the railway to Stowe House and Gardens from a different point of view

With six different trail themes getting stuck into Buckingham history is as simple as choosing your route. Interested in Stowe? View Stowe House and Gardens from the parkland trail, taking in temples and the House from a different angle and discover more about how Stowe and Buckingham are linked while taking in glorious view over the town.

What about the industrial revolution? There’s a trail for that too!

6. Did we mention it’s free?

Thanks to a £10,000 grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund Buxplore is completely free to use and will remain live for the next five years, with new routes add as often as we can. If you have ideas for new routes, let us know!

National Lottery Heritage Fund Logo

How to download the app and start using Buxplore

Start by visiting Buxplore.web.app on your mobile device and clicking the white box at the bottom of the screen to download the app. Then simply pick a route and visit the first location to get started!

More questions or need information about compatibility? Visit out Buxplore FAQ

A Little Bit of Colour Goes a Long Way

A little bit of colour was added to Buckingham Town Centre this week by the Town Council. Chairman of the Town Centre & Events Committee, Councillor Andy Mahi said ‘as we are slowly coming out of lock down it is nice to have something bright and cheerful in the town centre’.

The Town Centre & Events Committee has decided that there will not be the usual summer hanging baskets and planters this year due to the Coronavirus outbreak and the fact that the hanging baskets need to be watered daily. The Green Spaces Team are only carrying out priority work at this time.

The planters in the town centre have been set with geraniums which need less maintenance and the flower beds outside the Sorting Office have been planted with Canna lilies along with geraniums.

The Town Council would like to thank Dave, a member of the public who has planted up the old cattle trough in the cattle pens with summer bedding plants.

If in the future you would like to sponsor a new flower bed or any of the existing planters, please contact Events Coordinator, Amanda Brubaker by e-mail events@buckingham-tc.gov.uk  or on 01280 816426.

 

 

 

 

Buckingham Business Consultation

Helping to Re-open Buckingham

Buckingham Town Council is asking all businesses in the town to help think about what can be done to help businesses reopen, support the high street and develop online sales from the town.

Complete the business consultation via SurveyMonkey

The Council has developed a guidance pack for shops and services to help them trade safely as we come out of lock down. The pack contains information about adapting business premises to facilitate social distancing and explains the plans to re-open markets and public spaces in the town centre.

Seeking Ideas

The town’s Economic Development Working Group is hosted by the Town Council and includes representatives from Buckinghamshire Council, local businesses, the Buckingham Society and the University.  The Group met on 26th May to discuss how to help the town reopen as lock down restrictions are gradually lifted.  Initial ideas include extending the current free parking arrangements, providing outdoor tables and chairs for people who have purchased take away goods, supporting local businesses to trade or promote themselves online and provide advice and guidance.  The Town Council are now asking all local businesses to let us know your ideas and requests for help.

Online Shopping Platform

We understand that in the short to medium term, town centre footfall will be greatly reduced, and shops will be unable to serve as many customers as usual at any one time. We are therefore exploring the option of an online shopping platform and home delivery service for businesses in Buckingham. This would likely provide participating businesses with additional sales and would help local residents, many of whom will still be self-isolating or making fewer trips to the town centre until Covid-19 ceases to be a risk to their health.

Any online shop and delivery platform will be made very simple for businesses to use. We know that local online shop and delivery models work as our colleagues in Princes Risborough launched the Risborough Basket 7 weeks ago and have made over 4000 sales with an average transaction value of £18.00.

Thanks to help from Buckinghamshire Council, we are working with Sally Williams from Retail Revival Ltd. who set up the Risborough Basket with Princes Risborough Town Council. Sally would like to discuss your needs and issues as you adapt to new trading conditions and her findings and recommendations will inform our immediate plans for business support.

To receive our guidance pack and further information about the support available please complete the contact form attached.

For enquiries please contact Paul Hodson at Buckingham Town Council on 01280 823020 or email office@buckingham-tc.gov.uk

New Mayor elected online

Buckingham Town Council carried out its first online Mayoral election and robing ceremony on Monday 11th May 2020.  Councillor Geraldine Collins was elected unanimously as the new Town Mayor, and formally robed by her husband Councillor Paddy Collins in their home during an online meeting which was watched over YouTube by residents and friends in Buckingham and overseas.  Paddy Collins will be the Mayor’s consort for the year.

Declaration signing 2020Councillor Collins is the first Mayor of Buckingham to have been elected and robed online.

During the meeting Councillor Howard Mordue – the longest serving Town Councillor – explained the history behind the Mayor’s chain, and the other regalia.

A video of the ceremony can be viewed from the Council’s YouTube channel.

Geraldine is keen to support local groups during these difficult times, and would welcome invitations to take part in events even if they are happening online!

Councillor Collins said:

At this time of year, we usually have a variety of events in our town to look forward to Mayor of Buckingham, Cllr. Geraldine Collinsand at these I would normally be able to meet many of you and your families. Sadly, many of these events have had to be cancelled. At these events we pass around our buckets to raise funds for the Mayor’s charities, I hope we can find some alternative ways to support our local groups and charities until such time as we can all get together again, which I look forward to very much.

I spent many years during my nursing career in children’s nursing and during this time became aware of the emotional difficulties many children and young people face alongside the physical illness. In the adult side I saw the same difficulties and saw the challenges faced in supporting and helping all concerned. This is why the charities I have chosen to raise funds for this year are:

  • Clearly Speaking who are a great support to children, young people and their families, dealing with a variety of emotional needs; i.e. autistic spectrum disorders, learning difficulties anxiety disorders, depression, communication and mental health and the
  • Kit Cat Club who also support children and their families through very difficult times.” Many of these problems have been exacerbated during this present crisis.

 

For more information about the Mayor and her chosen charities, visit the Mayor of Buckingham page.

A polite notice for Dog Walkers

Dog Walkers asked to do their bit to ensure Social Distancing

Buckingham Town Council are asking dog owners to keep their dog on a lead at all times whilst in public places. Keeping your dogs on a lead will ensure that all park visitors comply with the Government’s advice on social distancing – requiring people to remain two metres apart.
Current Government advice states:
‘If walking your dog in areas used by other people, you should walk your dog on a lead to ensure you can safely keep 2 metres away from others. You can find further guidance for pet owners at
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/coronavirus-guidance-on-access-to-green-spaces
We understand our beloved canine friends need a good dose of daily exercise but our Green Spaces Team are reporting that there has been an increase in people seen with dogs off leads. This is very worrying and we are urging you to please stick to the restrictions in our parks. There are posters throughout the parks reminding people to keep their dogs on a lead and under control. We are aware that this is an unwelcome change for some dog owners but we must all do our bit during these challenging times.

1. For enquiries please contact Paul Hodson at Buckingham Town Council on 01280 823020, office@buckingham-tc.gov.uk

Outgoing Mayor’s Message

I would like to have finished my year as Buckingham’s 254th Mayor on a higher note than a global lockdown, but events overtook all of us in March, and since then we have all been living and working virtually.

Nevertheless, it has been an honour and a privilege to service the town I love, and have loved since I grew up in North Bucks in the 1950s. For my Mayoress Alexandra and I, there have been some real highlights in the 10 months during which we were able to function normally. Either singly or together, we attended just over 100 engagements between May 2019 and March 2020.

It was a great disappointment that we had to cancel the Mayor’s Civic Service just as the pandemic took hold, as it would have been a chance to meet you all in our beautiful Parish Church, and also to boost the fundraising of my two charities, Medical Detection Dogs and YC2 Bucks Young Carers. Thanks to everyone who has given so generously during the year.

Perhaps the most memorable event was our visit to Germany in February to sign the Twinning agreement with Neukirchen-Vluyn, making Buckingham the first town in the UK to twin after Brexit. The hospitality of both our German friends and of Buckingham Twinning Association was quite wonderful.

There were also inspiring events: the Bucks Youth Big Night Out at the Waterside, Aylesbury, and the High Sheriff’s Reception at The Stables, Wavendon. There were many visits to both our secondary Schools, the Buckingham School and the Royal Latin School, to our Primary Schools, and to the University of Buckingham, where meeting Peter Jones at Enfest and the President of the United Nations on her visit were also unforgettable.

Another high spot was the first University Medical School Graduation last June – it is a sobering thought that many of those young people there that day have since been working on the frontline of the war against Covid-19.

There are so many I want to thank, but I could not have got through the year without the guidance of our Town Clerk, Paul Hodson, of our Planning Clerk, Katharine McElligott, whose is also the keeper of our regalia and protocol, and of Louise Stubbs of BTC who has also been so supportive. My thanks also to Will Pearson-Gee, who has been the Mayor’s Chaplain during this topsy-turvy twelve months.

In closing, I wish my successor Cllr Geraldine Collins every success in her role as the 255th Mayor pf Buckingham. I look forward to continuing to serve Buckingham as a Town Councillor for as long as you will have me. Thank you all.

Cllr Mark Cole JP
Mayor of Buckingham, 2019/20

Mayor of Buckingham 2019/2020 Cllr Mark Cole JP and Alexandra Cole
Signing the twinning agreement with Neukirchen-Vluyn
University of Buckingham Medical School
Meeting the President of the United Nations General Assembly
Visiting the Medical Detection Dogs
Buckingham Christmas Light Switch On 2019

VE Day Friday 8th May 2020

VE stands for Victory in Europe, and VE Day celebrates 75 years since the guns fell silent at the end of World War II.

Some of the Country's original VE Day celebrations are now sadly unable to take place. But that doesn't mean we can't celebrate from home! There are lots of ideas for different ways residents can join in.

 

Buckingham Events

Our Town Crier has risen to the challenge and will be making a special Cry for Peace.

The current schedule is as follows:

11:00 am: Join in the nationwide two minutes silence on your doorstep

2:55 pm: Bugler will play Last Post and Reveille

3:00 pm: Nation's Toast to Heroes of WW2

3:00 pm: Piper playing Battles O'er and VE Day 75

6.55 pm: Town Crier's Cry for Peace

Nation's Toast to the Heroes of WW2

VE Day celebration organisers are encouraging everyone to undertake the ‘Nation’s Toast to the Heroes of WW2’ at 3pm on the 8th May, from the safety of your own home, stand up and raise a glass of refreshment and undertake the following ‘Toast’: “To those who gave so much, we thank you."

This toast is an opportunity to pay tribute to the many millions at home and abroad that gave so much to ensure we all enjoy and share the freedom we have today.

Great British Bunting

BBC Radio stations have banded together with a great craft idea. Raid the house for supplies and make some Great British Bunting! A great way to show your pride and honour the men and women of WW2 over this special long weekend.

"You can decorate your bunting with pictures of whatever inspires you, whether it’s those who fought on the frontline or worked hard on the Homefront, or whether it’s a celebration of enduring peace or your own personal hero."