Don’t mind the weeds, we’re feeding the bees!

In support of Plantlife’s No Mow May campaign, Buckingham Town Council will be leaving large sections of the town’s greenspaces uncut throughout May and beyond. Housing estates’ verges and safety sight lines along the town’s roads, play facilities and footpaths paths will, however, still be cut.

Ever wondered who is responsible for cutting the grass near you? Visit Buckinghamshire Council’s useful map, linked below:
http://ow.ly/jKBp50Jb62C

Throughout May visitors to the town’s parks and greenspaces will see areas of grass left to grow and wildflowers allowed to bloom. A perfect example is within Bourton Park, where grassy paddocks are covered in a sea of wild grasses and frothy white Cow Parsley.

The campaign, which is organised by wild plant conservation charity Plantlife, encourages people to support wildlife and boost pollination by leaving some of its greenspaces to grow across the town throughout May. The Town Council is also encouraging residents, where possible, to do similar with their lawns.

Buckingham Town Council is working towards becoming carbon-neutral by 2030 and one target is to review grass cutting regimes and promote biodiversity. Hopefully, by reducing the schedule of cuts in our greenspaces, it will give some of our open spaces time to flourish and boost the numbers of wild flowers that provide valuable food for pollinators.

Buckingham Town Council has already enhanced a number of areas over the past few year, including increasing meadow and wildflower areas to over 10,250 m2 in total since 2017/18 to improve biodiversity and help pollinators – that’s over 2.5 acres or 14 tennis courts and has the potential to be home to millions of insects.

In addition, the Council’s Green Spaces Team uses a fully electric van meaning lower vehicle emissions and less noise when undertaking maintenance.  All grass cuttings and prunings collected by the team are composted and used on council sites.

Damage to recently planted black poplar trees

A number of recently planted black poplar trees in Heartlands Park have been deliberately damaged. These trees were planted by local people as part of a project with Buckinghamshire Council, where 23 volunteers joined Council staff to plant 250 saplings earlier this year.

Planting trees is an important part of looking after the local environment, replacing trees lost to disease, improving the diversity of the natural area and helping to combat climate change.

Chairman of the town council’s Environment Committee, Warren Whyte, said: “I am extremely angry at the pointless vandalism of our newly planted black poplar trees in Heartlands Park. There is nothing gained by such wanton destruction in our parks, and I fail to understand what the perpetrators gain.

I urge anyone who sees our environment being damaged by criminals, please report to the police so we can together try and stop this pathetic destruction from continuing.”

Tourist Information Centre / Shopmobility Assistant Job Vacancy

Job Advert

Saturdays 0945-1615 with additional extra hours as mutually agreed.
SCP 5-6: £10.22 – £10.42 per hour
Depending on experience and qualifications.

Buckingham Town Council manages a Tourist Information Centre and a Shopmobility Service, so this is a varied role with the successful candidate expected to cover both services as mutually agreed under a flexible arrangement.

We are looking for an enthusiastic person with good communication skills, who is capable of working alone or as part of a team. Experience in a customer service environment is desirable and a mature and confident manner is essential.

The main tasks will include:

  • Provide the highest level of customer service, responding to all enquiries in a professional, comprehensive and timely manner.
  • Ensure the TIC and Shopmobility scheme create a welcoming, professional and positive image of Buckingham.
  • Assist Shopmobility users to make safe use of the equipment provided.
  • Assist with all administration procedures relating to the operation of the TIC and Shopmobility, including cash reconciliation and banking.
  • Opening and closing of Old Gaol Museum and assisting with museum tasks as required.
  • Operate the Shopmobility booking system and complete accurate records regarding membership, usage and user training.

For further information please read our detailed job description and person specification or for an informal discussion about the post, please contact Sam Hoareau on 01280 816426.

Buckingham Town Council is an Equal Opportunities Employer.

Closing date for applications: Tuesday 17th May. Interviews to be held: week commencing 23rd May 2022 with immediate start for the right candidate.

Please note we will only accept a completed application pack.  If you do not complete an application form you will not be considered. CV's will not be accepted.

Applications are available on the links below or by calling 01280 816426.

Applications should be submitted by email to: deputytownclerk@buckingham-tc.gov.uk

Or by post to:

Buckingham Town Council, Buckingham Centre, Verney Close, Buckingham, MK18 1JP

Successful applications will be subject to receipt of suitable references.

 

Spring Green Fair an eco success

Buckingham’s Spring Green Fair takes place as part of its Climate Emergency Action Plan, an opportunity to champion environmentally friendly alternatives, showcase local conservation groups and encourage practical action by local people.

A fantastic turn out of visitors attended the Buckingham Spring Green Fair on Sunday 24th April. This year’s guests danced along to live music from Pete Thirlby & Dean Jones, Harvey Fowler & Mark Edwards and wandered along the ancient cattle pens area of Buckingham Town Centre, enjoying the sunshine and visiting stalls from local groups and businesses with an environmental focus.

Traders included local willow weaver, Adrian Bernet, who gave demonstrations, while children (and adults!) had a go at making their own willow crowns. Electric bikes and cars, community groups Berks, Bucks & Oxon wildlife trust, Buckingham Fairtrade Town and Buckingham Swift Town. Recycle4Bucks and Buckinghamshire Community Energy drew a crowd interested in reducing waste and save energy.

The Town Council put on a bee hunt – with 11 locally made knitted bees to find in amongst the stalls and gave away enough wildflower seeds to create an initial 120 metres square of wildflower corridors through residents’ gardens. Plans are being made to distribute another 300m² of seeds!

Chair of the events committee, Cllr. Robin Stuchbury said: “Firstly, it was tremendous to have so many groups and organisations to support the event, it was good to have the support of officers, throughout the day and Councillors who manned different stalls in support of the community groups. I look forward to repeating these type of events in the coming year – the music built a fantastic ambience but what was so wonderful was seeing children taking away wildflower seeds and willow crowns, giving a green, rustic and environmental feel to the day’s activities. Lastly, well done to everyone who took part and came along.”

BBQs not permitted in Buckingham’s Parks

As the warmer weather returns, the Town Council is reminding visitors to its parks that barbecues are not permitted in Buckingham’s parks and green spaces. Unfortunately, in recent years, our team and the local Fire Brigade have had to deal with the damage that resulted from discarded or uncontrolled BBQs.

Barbecues have a negative impact on the local and global environment as they emit greenhouse gases into the atmosphere and regularly leave behind scorched patches of burned grass that take months to recover and damage our beautiful surroundings.

Everyone who visits Buckingham’s parks and green spaces should also make sure they bag up their rubbish and take it home where it can be recycled or disposed of responsibly. This will help to reduce litter and protect wild animals who can become trapped and entangled in dumped items.

We want everyone to enjoy themselves during the warmer months in our parks and greenspaces. So please, pack up a picnic and fill up a cool-bag for a day in the park – but please dispose of your litter properly and leave your barbecues at home.

For enquiries, please contact Paul Hodson at Buckingham Town Council on 01280 816426, communications@buckingham-tc.gov.uk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Buckingham Town Matters Summer Newsletter

The Summer edition of the Buckingham Town Matters newsletter is now out for delivery and will be with residents soon. This edition includes some topics on the Grant recipients, Future events, What the Town Council achieved 2021-2022, New: swan sculpture trail and a Flood report.

If you prefer to listen to your local updates, try our audio version. This edition is read by Buckingham Town Councillor, Anja Schaefer.

We hope you enjoy it and make sure to keep an eye out for updates on the next edition Autumn 2022.

Spring Green Fair

Do you care about the environment and how it affects you? If so, pop along to Buckingham’s Spring Green Fair on Sunday 24th April in Buckingham centre between 10am and 2pm.

There will be a range of stalls sharing information on community projects, environmental campaigns, and sustainable business innovations. There will be a practical willow weaving demonstration, children’s activities, and information stalls.

Pick up some wildflower seeds to sow in your garden and help pollinating insects.
Relax in the giant deck chair while enjoying an ice cream from Marks Ices, coffee from Totally Awesome Coffee or cake from Bee’s Kitchen.

Cllr Robin Stuchbury, Chairman of the Town Centre & Events Committee said “This year, in line with the Town Council’s aims from the Town Meeting we will be celebrating the environment.

Many participants are supporting the event. Please join us and be part of the future and hopefully together we will find some solutions to improve our local environment.”

Cllr Sue Hetherington will be raising awareness about common swifts and steps people can take to help swifts in and around Buckingham. Interested in putting up a swift box? Visit Men in Sheds on their stall.

Bucks Community Energy will be there to talk to you about renewable energy. Buckingham Town Council will have information on the Town Council’s Climate Emergency plan.

Other stall holders include Butterfly Conservation Trust, BucksEVs with electric vehicles and Fully Charged electric bikes, Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust, Buckingham, Winslow District Scouts, Planet Refill, El Finca Monte, Buckingham Fairtrade, Natalie Jane Candles, Buckingham Canal Society and Recycle4Bucks

Hopping fun at Easter Bazaar

Families hopped to Lace Hill Sports & Community Centre on Sunday 10th April and enjoyed an early Easter treat. The event featured an egg trail hunt, bouncy castle, face painting refreshments and plenty of children’s craft activities.

The craft fair included local businesses selling their wares, from crystal wire wrapped jewellery, to pet portraits, sell-out fresh bakes and bespoke hand-picked seasonal hampers by a young enterprise (Bycell Hampers) from Akeley Wood School sixth form students.

Children jumped like bunnies on the bouncy castle and with a little help from the grown-ups, everyone had fun completing the egg hunt trail and solving the puzzle! Children were also encouraged to design their own Easter crown for a chance to win a chocolate egg hamper. With help from the Mayor of Buckingham, three winners have been chosen and will receive their prizes in time for Easter Sunday.

We believe events like this are important to bring the community together and would like to say a huge thank you to everybody who joined us, including all the stall holders, the craft room volunteer and to the hirers at Lace Hill Sports & Community Centre who donated the chocolate egg prizes for the children.

Cllr. Robin Stuchbury, Chair of the Town Centre and Events Committee said – “It was brilliant seeing so many young people clearly enjoying themselves. They and their parents, all in our community centre on a Sunday, having a great time! We have a number of events through the summer aimed at the same age group including the Lace Hill Family Funday on the 17th July and Play around the Parishes on the 26th July, 17th and 22nd August.”

How to make Buckingham more bee friendly

Wildflowers add a wonderful variety of colour to any garden or community space. But more importantly, they provide bumblebees and other insects with food, shelter and habitat..

In the past 80 years large areas of wildflower habitat have disappeared from the countryside. This has left bumblebees with little to feed on, and is strongly linked with bumblebee numbers declining in many places..

However, you can ‘Bee the Change’! Wildflowers can happily grow outside in pots, plots or planters. If you don’t have access to a patch of soil, it’s a great place to start, especially for balconies or a paved area.

How to sow your wildflower seeds

1. Sow in Spring or Autumn, ideally in grass free soil. Make sure the soil is not too
wet or dry and avoid that urge to add topsoil, as native wildflowers do well on
low nutrient soil!

2. Give the soil a good rake over and sprinkle the seeds by hand. Grass can grow quickly and strongly and can stop the wildflowers from growing. You don’t want any competition for the wildflowers!

3. Rake the soil again to cover the seeds, but don’t bury them! Remember, seeds need sunlight to germinate. 

4. Carefully water the area and relax!

If you are using a pot or planter, then make sure there are holes in the bottom for drainage.

Remember to share photographs of your wildflower patches with us @buckingham-tc

For more fantastic information and fascinating wildflower based activities, visit Buzzing Bucks

Buckingham’s Unique Tourist Information Centre

This year Buckingham celebrates the 27th anniversary of the Buckingham Tourist Information Centre and with hundreds of visitors through the doors each year, the Centre provides an invaluable service to both residents and tourists. Located inside the Buckingham Old Gaol, it is the perfect place to start if you want to find out about Buckingham’s past and present. The office is open Monday – Saturday 10 AM – 4 PM and opens on Sundays in August. Our Town Centre Manager and friendly team are here to help provide advice and guidance to visitors. Below is a quick round-up of the services we can offer:

Visitor attractions and guides to the best things to do – information and tickets for local events – useful accommodation advice – food and drink recommendations – heritage information – wide range of maps, guides, and brochures – transport and travel advice – National Express bookings – Theatre Tokens – advice and background information on surrounding villages and towns – information about local shops – UK holiday destinations and a range of local produce and gifts to purchase in the shop.

As well as supervising the Tourist Information Team, the Town Centre Manager is busy building relationships with local businesses and regional tourism leads; our common goal is to attract, engage and delight more visitors to Buckingham, as well as to help boost the economy within the town. The Discover Buckingham website has business listings for shops, accommodation, restaurants, pubs, and attractions including event listings, blogs, and news from around Buckingham. If you have an event or own retail premises that you would like to add to this website for free, please email tic@buckinghamp-tc.gov.uk and we will be happy to help.

The Chair of the Town Centre & Events Committee, Cllr. Robin Stuchbury, said: “The Tourist Information Centre has been an important asset in promoting Buckingham as a town of interest for tourism but also in promoting local businesses, therefore supporting its local economy.

Thanks to careful financial management, the professionalism of its staff and innovative approaches used (especially via social media platforms and the new website) the Tourist Information Centre holds a strong position within North Buckinghamshire and looks forward to strengthening further its relationships and links with local stakeholders such as the Buckingham University but also regional partners such as the Buckinghamshire Council”.

For enquiries please contact Paul Hodson at Buckingham Town Council on 01280 816426, communications@buckingham-tc.gov.uk