Grants available for Buckingham community groups 2023

Buckingham Town Council funds thousands of pounds worth of community, voluntary and social group projects through one year grants every year.

Applications for 2023-2024 funding are invited to be received by Friday 4th November at 12 noon by email to deputytownclerk@buckingham-tc.gov.uk.

Application forms are available on the town council website. and must be accompanied by a copy of your group’s latest accounts (or business plan for new groups).

Last years funded grants included: solar panels for the cricket club house, free family activity sessions, football training equipment, flood defences, accessible fishing platform and a beacon for the Platinum Jubilee.

Anyone with questions about the grant fund is encouraged to contact the Town Council office who are happy to give help and advice with applying for funding.

Councillor Lisa O’Donoghue, chair of the Resources committee said: “We would like to encourage eligible groups to apply, last year 8 groups were awarded one year funding (alongside 8 longer term funds). We know that the grants we give out really benefit the community as a whole, including visitors and residents.”

Mayor of Buckingham awards prizes at Mayor Making Ceremony

Mayor of Buckingham, Cllr. Margaret Gateley will continue for a second year as Mayor, after her fellow Councillors voted unanimously for her to stay on. Cllr. Margaret Gateley said that: "It is a great honour to be Mayor of Buckingham for a second year. It was fantastic to be able to celebrate Mayor Making with dignitaries and Mayors from around Buckinghamshire and beyond, with fellow Councillors, members of community groups, family and friends. It was special to have the opportunity to recognise the service and contribution of different individuals and groups from our town through our awards and grants. My thanks to everyone who contributed to making this such a lovely evening."

This is the first time in three years that the annual Mayor Making event – a formal ceremony that confirms the Council’s choice as Mayor and Deputy Mayor of the Town - was able to take place indoors, at Buckingham Community Centre. The Town Council was joined by a number of dignitaries, including the Lord Lieutenant, Countess Howe, and High Sheriff of Buckinghamshire, Debbie Brock. Mayors from neighbouring towns Aylesbury, Leighton-Linslade, Brackley, Towcester and Deputy Mayor of Banbury as well as Lt. Col David Marce from RAF Croughton, who all joined in the celebrations.

Cllr. Anja Schaefer was also appointed Deputy Mayor, Anja has been a Councillor for the last twelve months and is a lecturer at the Open University.

Guests were entertained by Linda Watkins and Mike Moyse and £150 was raised for the Mayor’s Charities 2022 - 2023, which this year are the Jedidiah Project and Buckingham Food Bank.

This year’s community awards were given to:

Honorary Freeman

  • Terry Bloomfield for 20 years of service to the town, as well as being a Councillor for many years, Terry was a key person involved with horticultural shows, managing the community centre and the Old Gaol Trust.

Friend of Buckingham

  • Chris Mullis for all his work in setting up and managing the Buckingham Support Network during lockdown.
  • Mikey Dyson-Smith for his morale-boosting work through the pandemic.
  • Jenny Manning for her work on the Buckingham Railway Walk Volunteers Group.

Bard of Buckingham

  • Dean Jones, the first ever Bard of Buckingham, who carried on the role for two years

Arts and Sports Award

  • Buckingham Ukulele Group in recognition of their outstanding contribution to the local community through enhancing the cultural life in Buckingham.

Natural Environment and Climate Champion Award

  • Railway Walk Conservation Group in recognition of the exceptional and outstanding contribution to the local community through protecting and enhancing the environment.

Voluntary Community and Social Enterprise Award

  • Men in Sheds in recognition of the group’s continued support for men

Cllr. Geraldine Collins was also awarded a rose bowl, as a mark of her service as past Mayor of Buckingham 2020 – 2021.

Cheques were also given out to the Mayor’s Charities for 2021 – 2022: Community Care North Bucks and Project Street Life, who were each awarded £1,785 from fundraising projects and collections at events throughout the last year.

Grants were also awarded to 16 local groups by the Town Council, with members of the groups invited to attend and receive their charity cheques.

Town Council Four-year grants:

Buckingham Fairtrade, Buckingham Old Gaol Trust, Buckingham Summer Festival, Buckingham Tennis Club, Buckingham Youth Club, Citizens Advice Bureau, Chandos Park Bowls Club, Project Street Life

Town Council One-Year Grants

Aspire, Buckingham & District Angling Association, Buckingham Town Cricket Club, Buckingham United FC, Lace Hill Residents Association, St. Peter & St. Paul’s Church, Swan Community Hub, West End Bowls Club.

More details about the grants will be published next month.

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!"

£28,481 given to charities and voluntary groups in Buckingham

In May 2021, the Town Council gave grants totalling £28,481 to projects and activities beneficial to the people of Buckingham.

Due to the profound impact of Coronavirus on Buckingham, some of last year's grant projects were not able to take place and the funding that had been awarded was unclaimed. Unused funding from the previous year was made available to 2021/22 applicants in order to help groups impacted by Coronavirus bounce back stronger than ever.

Two projects from last year are also continuing through 2021 due to changes of circumstances. This includes Swan Community Hub’s Job Club: giving extra support to residents who have lost their job and would benefit from completely free help with job applications, CVs and interview practice.

This year the Town Council is supporting: after school activities for young people, financial advice, palliative and end of life nursing care at home, a classical music festival, LED lighting, installation of a baby change table, bus trips for isolated people and much more.

Mayor of Buckingham, Cllr. Margaret Gateley met the grants recipients’ outdoors on the 14th June to distribute the grant cheques and hear more about the projects that are being funded. Cllr. Gateley said that “It was a great pleasure to meet representatives from many of the voluntary groups which support and enrich our community.  These organisations have been especially important and have made a real difference during the difficult time experienced by many people over the last year. It is good that the Town Council is able to support them as they continue their work in the coming year.”

For full details of the amounts given and to whom, please see the table below:

Transitions UK£2,000Buckingham hub, mentoring for young
people at risk
Buckingham Town Cricket Club£1,500roof
mounted solar panels for the club house
Swan Community Hub£1,380free family summer
fun sessions for younger children
Buckingham United Football Club£1,000club training equipment
West End Bowls Club£1,000flood defences for the club house
Lace Hill Residents’ Association£968community spirit projects, holiday events and
more
Buckingham & District Angling
Association
£623building an accessible for all
fishing platform
St Peter & St Paul’s Church£324Platinum
Beacon, to be lit as part of the Jubilee
celebrations
TOTAL:£7,795

Mayor of Buckingham, Cllr. Margaret Gateley, met the grants recipients to hand out their awards in June 2021