Christmas Parade 2021 Road Closures

The Christmas Parade arrives in Buckingham this Saturday. The town centre will fill with a fantastic array of floats who parade from Chandos Road to the town centre and back again. Each float is made by local groups and, this year, celebrates fashion through the ages. The parade starts from 10.30am.

In order for this to take place a full road closure will be in place, starting from 7am on Saturday 11th December. The links below will take you to more information about road closures, parking restrictions, bus diversions and access to Cornwalls Meadow car park during the event.

Christmas Parade

New snowflake motifs bring snow to Buckingham

Buckingham’s town centre has been lit up with brand new Christmas Motif lights. The silver and gold design features snowflakes – a fitting theme as snowflakes caused by Storm Arwen fell throughout the switch-on weekend, covering Buckingham in a light layer of snow.
The motifs, along with the icicle lights that are installed throughout the town centre, were switched on at 5.30pm on Saturday 27th November. Sadly, the planned Switch On event had to be cancelled, as the high winds forecast meant that the lighting and speakers required to run the entertainment could not be safely erected by the contractor. The planned festive market and entertainments were also cancelled due to safety concerns.
Cllr. Robin Stuchbury, Chair of the Town Centre and Events Committee told us: “The new lights are part of a continuous improvement to the festive lights in the town centre funded by the Town Council, with thanks to the town Council Officers who supported this event.”
Several more festive events are planned to take place in Buckingham, including the Christmas Parade, run by the Christmas Parade Committee and supported, facilitated and funded by the Town Council and the Community Fair on 11th December. Any Community Group wanting a stall at the Community Fair is asked to contact Amanda at the Town Council via email events@buckingham-tc.gov.uk or phone: 01280 816 426.

Old Gaol and Christmas tree
Snowflake motifs outside the Town Hall
Christmas Lights above Binns and Boots
Buckingham Town Centre lit up with Christmas Lights

Buckingham Christmas Cards designed by local children for sale in aid of Mayor’s Charities

Mayor of Buckingham, Cllr. Margaret Gateley with winners Isabella and Eva outside the Old Gaol Christmas tree
Packs of 6 cards tied with yellow ribbon

Three wonderful Christmas Cards have been designed by Buckingham children, which will be printed and sold to raise money for local charities in the Tourist Information Centre from 25th November. The three designs were designed by Isabella Caswell, age 6, Mere S, age 8 and Eva Whittemore, age 10. The winners were chosen by Mayor of Buckingham, Cllr. Margaret Gateley.

The cards are being sold in aid of the Mayor’s Charities: Project Street Life and Community Care North Bucks. Community Care North Bucks is run by local volunteers and comprises Adult Carers Support Group, YC2 Young Carers: Buckingham & Winslow, Open House and the Hospital Car Service.

Each pack includes 6 cards, 2 of each design, and costs £4. They can be bought from the Tourist Information Centre, Buckingham Old Gaol.

The competition was kindly sponsored by local businesses BCQ Print, who printed the cards, Black Dog Design, who designed them and the Little Buckingham Clinic which means all of the £4 raised from the sale of each pack will go directly to local charities.

Mayor of Buckingham, Cllr. Margaret Gateley told us: “It was really lovely to choose the winners of this year’s Christmas Card competition. This is a great way to raise money for my chosen charities. It is amazing to see such artistic ability from local children. My thanks go to all who entered the competition and my congratulations go to those who won, whose designs can be seen and purchased at The Old Gaol.”

Christmas Card Winning Design, Isabella Age 6, Church in the snow
Winning Design, Eva, age 10, baubles and stars
Winning Design, Mere, age 8, Christmas tree and gifts in the snow

Christmas Lights Switch On 2021 Cancelled

⚠️🎄🚨 IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT ⚠️🎄🚨

Due to the continued bad weather and high wind warnings in place the Buckingham Christmas Lights Switch On is cancelled.

This was a difficult decision for the Town Council to make, but unfortunately the high wind speeds and the large pieces of equipment required to run the event create too great a safety risk at an outdoor event. The lights will still be turned on tonight, at around 5.30pm.

With thanks to all of our volunteers, traders, musicians, performers, residents and visitors that would have joined the Town Council tonight and who have been such a big part of celebrating Buckingham in 2021.

Please share this message on to anyone you know who was planning to attend. Thank you.

Snow Globe FAQ

Keen to try the snow globe at the Buckingham Christmas Lights Switch On 2021, but have a few questions?

What time will the Snow Globe be open from?

The Globe will be available from 4 – 8pm in Saturday 27th November.

Do I have to pay?

No, access to the snow globe is free.

Do I need to take our own photos?

No. There will be staff at the event who can use your phone to take photos for you.

Where can we find the Snow Globe?

The Snow Globe will be in the Cattlepens area of Buckingham Town Centre, near Prezzo. In the same area will be the festive market, hot food and drink traders and a children’s ride. There will also be entertainment in this area from 4 – 6pm.

Can I book a slot in advance?

No. Access to the snow globe will be first come, first served. We expect the snow globe to be popular, and would advise arriving early (from 4pm) and joining the queue if you want a photo.

How many people can be in the photo?

We’re asking for people to stick to household groups for photos, please.

Is there wheelchair or mobility scooter access to the snow globe?

Unfortunately not, as the access is too steep. However, our team are happy to make space so that wheelchair users can pose in front of the globe instead. There is also a selfie board at the disabled viewing area for the lights switch-on, outside the Old Gaol, which you might prefer to try. There will be someone in a yellow hi-vis at the front of the globe so please do come and chat with us when you arrive.

 

Remembrance Parade Sunday 14th November: new screen to improve accessibility

The Buckingham branch of the Royal British Legion are using funding from the legacy of local supporter Peggy Dale and Buckingham Town Council to fund a large screen at the Remembrance Parade, on Sunday 14th November, this year. The Parade is extremely popular, and the addition of a live feed of the event projected to the screen will allow residents to spread out and watch proceedings from a position further away from the War Memorial if they would like to.

Andy Cooper, Chair of Royal British Legion said that “Peggy Dale was a past Mayor of Buckingham and President of the Buckingham branch of the Royal British Legion. She left a generous legacy to promote the RBL in Buckingham. It is Peggy’s legacy which has helped to fund the Big Screen.”

War Memorial with poppy wreaths

Image showing war memorial surrounded by poppy wreaths

The parade forms up in Market Hill, on Sunday 14th November, at 10.00am before the procession moves off at 10.30am, walking through the town centre towards Castle Street. The parade ends at St Peter and St Paul’s Church where the War Memorial is sited.

Traditionally crowds gather around the War Memorial to watch the laying of the wreaths, the Remembrance service and take part in a two-minute silence at 11.00am. However, in recent years’ numbers attending have been so large that it was sometimes difficult for all attendees to fully take part.

This year, with funding from the Royal British Legion and the Town Council, a large screen will be positioned at the side of the church, allowing those attending who cannot fit around the monument to spread out across the church green and have a clear view of proceedings through a live stream video. It is hoped that the use of the screen will make it easier for vulnerable residents who would like to attend but would also prefer to socially distance.

Mayor of Buckingham, Cllr. Margaret Gateley said that: “This year’s Remembrance Parade and Service will be held on Sunday November 14, commencing in the Market Square. This act of remembrance has become increasingly popular, and it has become very crowded around the War Memorial. We have therefore agreed with the British Legion to fund jointly a large mobile screen, sited on the nearby Church Green, to show the Service live. This will relieve crowding around the War Memorial. This is necessary to enable some social distancing, due to the ongoing pandemic.”

Town Centre & Events Committee 25/10/2021

The Town Centre and Events Committee met last week on the 25th October to discuss a bumber crop of 2021 and 2022 events, including:

  • This year’s popular Celebrate Buckingham event will return during the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations on Thursday 2nd June 2021.
  • A public art event, similar to this year’s fabulous Otter Trail, was agreed for Summer 2022.
  • A new policy on carers tickets for Town Council events was agreed, allowing up to two free carer tickets for guests with disabilities. This means every attendee can have the support they need to fully enjoy events.
  • Thanks was recorded to Dean Jones, the outgoing Bard of Buckingham and recorded their congratulations to the new Bard of Buckingham, Sami, former Bard of Northampton. Councillors decided that the Town Council would finance a second publication of Mr Jones’s book of poetry which could be sold through the Tourist Information Centre.

The Buckingham Otters Auction

After a Summer of Otter Spotting, the Buckingham Otters Bidding Extravaganza Begins

Did you fall in love with the otters? Would you like to become the proud owner of one? Our final key event of the project, the Buckingham Otter Auction is here and bidding opens this Friday 24th September 2021!

The Buckingham Otter Trail was a temporary feel-good public art installation featuring ten 3ft tall sized otter sculptures. Sponsored by local businesses and organisations, the otters were decorated by professional artists, school children and community groups which brought much excitement to the town over summer.

Photograph of painted otter sculptures

Following the removal of the otter-tastic sculptures at the end of the trail and their appearance at the first-ever Celebrate Buckingham event, Buckingham Town Council will now say their final farewells to the beloved otters as they swim away to their new forever homes.

Chairman of the Town Centre Events Committee Cllr Robin Stuchbury said “After a summer of giving so many people pleasure the otters are going up for auction, if you’ve enjoyed seeing the otters this is your opportunity to purchase one and by doing so you’ll be contributing to the Mayor’s charities and benefiting our local community, in the very same way the otters have throughout the summer. So please don’t miss this one off opportunity of owning your own Buckingham otter and by doing so you’ll be helping others”.

The bidding will be taking place online using social media and the Town Council website. Each week one otter will be added to the auction, you will have nearly two weeks to make your highest bid.  The otter being auctioned will be on display at the Tourist Information Centre. Bids may be submitted through the Town Council website and by telephone.

The online event will see our large sculptures auctioned, with profits to be split equally between the Mayor’s Charities and a future similar event next summer. The Mayor’s Charities are Project Street Life and Community Care North Bucks, which includes YC2 Buckingham & Winslow Young Carers, North Bucks Carers, Open House and the Hospital Car Service. We could not be more delighted to raise money for these worthy causes, pouring funds straight back into supporting the community and making another sculpture trail next summer for everyone to enjoy.

If you wish to find out more information about the auction or one or more of the otter sculptures, please visit www.buckingham-tc.gov.uk

We’ll be sad to wave goodbye to our otters but we’re sure there are wonderful things on the horizon for them in their new homes!

From building bridges to pianist wanted: volunteering in Buckingham

Interested in helping your community? There's a huge number of community groups in Buckingham - each one powered by a small army of volunteers.

Whether you want to help build literal bridges, provide fun and support for young carers, play the piano for a panto, greet museum visitors, or be a projectionist at the cinema there's a community group in Buckingham that would love to have your help!

At this year’s Celebrate Buckingham Day, Buckingham Town Council filmed interviews with eight different community groups about their opportunities to volunteer in Buckingham and shared the results on their YouTube channel.

The video makes up part of our fantastic new web page promoting and supporting local community groups – offering them opportunities to recruit volunteers for free, share what they’re doing and apply for grants.

Chair of the Communications Strategy Working Group Cllr. Jon Harvey said that: “Volunteering is the lifeblood of our town. This has been even more apparent during the last few months when many, many people stepped forward to help their neighbours, strangers and the wider community as we all faced extraordinary and difficult times together.

Your Town Council is committed to doing all that we can to nurture, support and develop volunteering in our town. We keep track of local organisations that need volunteers and endeavour to connect people’s desires to ‘do something for others’ with those organisations that need willing volunteers.

Don’t forget research shows that volunteering has a positive effect on our mental health and wellbeing. Volunteering is good for everyone: the volunteers, the people benefitting from the work and our whole community!"

Celebrate Buckingham Day Postponed until 4th September

Celebrate Buckingham has been postponed until 4th September, following the delay in lifting Covid regulations until 19th July.  Buckingham Town Council has decided to postpone the event which was planned for this Saturday until Saturday 4th September.

Celebrate Buckingham is being organised by Buckingham Town Council and the Buckingham Society to celebrate the range of voluntary organisations who are serving the town, enable local groups to raise funds and recruit volunteers,  and to bring residents together.

The event will take place in Bourton Park where you will be able to see the robing of Buckingham’s Mayor Cllr Margaret Gateley.   There will also been the presentation of civic awards and the Town Council awards which will be presented by The Buckingham Civic Society and Mayor Cllr Margaret Gateley.  Two long serving councillors who retired in May will be made Honorary Freewomen of the town.  Bouncy castles, food vans and entertainment will be provided.

Cllr Robin Stuchbury, Chairman of the Town Centre & Events Committee said: “I hope to see as many people in September as were intending to join us in July, so that we can all mark the personal achievements of groups and organisations as well as individuals together celebrating what’s best about Buckingham and its wonderful community.”

For further updates on the event, please check the Buckingham Town Council website www.buckingham-tc.gov.uk or follow the Council’s Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts using @buckinghamTC.