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.
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.
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!
How to download the app and start using Buxplore
You can now download the app using the Google Play Store!
Once the app is loaded, simply pick a route and visit the first location to get started!
More questions or need information about compatibility? Visit out Buxplore FAQ
Following Monday’s announcement by the Prime Minister, as of Tuesday morning, 24th March the Town Council has closed all of the play areas it manages, i.e. those in Bourton Park (junior and senior), Chandos Park, Badgers Estate (Otters Brook), Meadway (Ken Tagg) and Lace Hill. It has also closed the use of the outdoor sports and exercise equipment in Bourton Park.
There are 8 other play parks in Buckingham not managed by the Town Council and the same rules will apply to them.
The Town Council’s parks remain open for exercise, however everyone who is visiting parks and open spaces must maintain social distancing, keeping at least 2 metres from each other. This means please avoid narrow paths, as well as thinking carefully about activities you may do there. It is not appropriate to use parks as social spaces to meet others who are not living in your household.
This is particularly important to remember while exercising. If you are moving faster than another individual or household group and are not able to pass someone with a 2m distance between you, you must stop or move to an area where there is a suitable distance. All park users are responsible for ensuring that this distance is maintained.
We will continue to monitor the position and may need to take further steps to protect the well-being of our residents. We are in this together.
We welcome everyone at Lace Hill Sports Pitches, this is a communal space that we want all residents to be able to enjoy. Buckingham's parks are one of its best assets and the Council works hard to maintain them and to create green spaces that work for everyone, including those exercising and dog walkers.
At the moment the Council is reviewing how best to ensure that everyone can enjoy the Lace Hill playing fields, and below are some of the most common questions that have been raised.
The playing fields at Lace Hill were paid for by section 106 funds, this is money that developers must pay when they build large numbers of houses to improve the infrastructure of an area.
The funding was for two sports pitches associated with the Sports Centre and the school. In the first stages of the housing at Lace Hill being built there may not have been sports teams visibly using the space, but several sports clubs now hire the space to use for training and official match games.
Buckingham Town Council took over the Lace Hill Sports & Community Centre and the playing fields from the developer in 2016. This means that the cost of maintaining the Centre and the Fields comes out the Council Tax paid by everyone in Buckingham and not just members of Lace Hill.
The housing maintenance fee paid separately by Lace Hill residents does not cover the Lace Hill Sports & Community Centre or the pitches.
In 2019, Buckingham United Football Club made an agreement with the Town Council that they would take over the maintenance of the sports pitches themselves. This means that they can maintain them to a higher standard without any extra cost to tax payers. As part of this agreement they also put up fencing around one of the pitches, which will be removed at the end of each season.
Other sports clubs also use the fields for training sessions and official match games, and pay a hire cost which contributes towards the cost of the maintenance of the area.
The playing fields are used by several sports teams for training and official match games, including by children learning how to play football, rugby and other field sports.
There have been repeated incidents where the presence of out of control dogs have put children in danger:
- Owners have allowed their dogs to foul on the pitches and not cleared it up, which is a significant risk to children as dog poo contains harmful parasites that can make children unwell, and in severe cases can cause blindness.
- Recently, owners have thrown balls for their dogs into the unfenced pitch area while children are training. This is an obviously unsafe thing to do, causing a serious risk of harm to both the children and dogs.
- Unsupervised dogs have also run into the children's play area.
The well being of everyone who uses the playing fields is important, and the Council cannot ignore the risk currently being posed to children from dogs whose owners are not keeping their dogs under control.
Yes you can, but dogs must be kept under control and walked responsibly.
- Always clear up after your dog, even if there is no one around. There are dog poo bins at the playing fields.
- Keep your dog off the sports pitches.
- Keep your dog under control, if the pitches are in use your dog should be on a lead.
- Consider using other park spaces if you want to spend time with your dog off lead.
This is because the unfenced area is still a sports pitch. In fact, this is the pitch most commonly used by children training, who are particularly at risk from out of control dogs.
If there are continued issues with dogs in this area the Council will have to consider firmer action.
The Buckingham Community Heritage App Project
Buckingham Town Council has received a grant of £10,000 from the National Lottery Heritage Fund for a Community Heritage App based in Buckingham. This exciting project has been developed with input from children and residents in the town and will be a fun interactive way to explore Buckingham and learn more about the town’s history.
Made possible by money raised by National Lottery players the project will enable residents and visitors to learn more about common landmarks like the Old Gaol and Chantry Chapel; as well as the hidden history of Buckingham and the Royal Family, Doctor De’ath, leather boots for circus elephants and duck races. To unlock historic photographs and earn points users will have to race around the town, visiting real locations and spotting the evidence of Buckingham’s historic past.
Buckingham Town Council has developed this project via its Economic Development Working Group which aims to support and develop the long term economic health of the town through town planning and increasing public pride and knowledge of the town. The app will encourage users to walk or cycle around the town, improving knowledge of paths and promoting visiting the historic Town Centre, riverside parks and other heritage locations further afield.
Councillor Mike Smith, Chair of the Economic Development Working Group said "This is great news for Buckingham, and thanks to the National Lottery we shall be able to introduce a completely modern approach to displaying and steering local residents and our many visitors around our numerous heritage sites. We are very grateful for the support of the National Lottery in this project, and look forward to welcoming some of its many players once the App has been developed."
Thanks to this National Lottery Heritage Fund grant, Buckingham Town Council and the work of local developer Mark Vanstone, from TechnoVisual, young people at both The Buckingham School and the Royal Latin School will be able to take part in the creation of their very own app from market research, coding and testing to launch, a fantastic learning opportunity – all while engaging with their Buckingham heritage.
“It’s nice to be involved in a project as big as big as this, I’d like to have a future career in cyber security.” Faye, from the Royal Latin School
“I thought it was a good opportunity to try something new and stretch my boundaries, which I’ve been doing more at secondary school.” “Kids often use things that are fun, and if you use this app you aren’t just having fun you’re learning about history too. Kids are on their phones all the time and this way they’re doing something educational too.” William and Chloe-Isabell, from The Buckingham School
About The National Lottery Heritage Fund
Using money raised by the National Lottery, we Inspire, lead and resource the UK’s heritage to create positive and lasting change for people and communities, now and in the future. www.heritagefund.org.uk.
Buckingham Town Council have installed a new wheelchair and pushchair accessible picnic benches at Bourton Park, thanks to funding from local group, Buckingham AccessforAll. The bench was designed and assembled by the Town Council’s Greenspaces Team using locally source timber.
Cllr. Ruth Newell, Chair of Environment Committee, said: “This is a great addition to Bourton Park and we thank AccessforAll for funding this Picnic Bench. It looks great and will be well used.”
Mr. Ed Grimsdale, Secretary of AccessforAll said: “Our Access Group wanted to set an example by raising some money to buy something which would be useful both for disabled people resident in Buckingham and the town’s visitors. It decided to buy an accessible park bench because there’s a legal duty under the discrimination acts to make such provision but also it’s fun to be included, to be sat with friends around the same table sharing a picnic in the fresh air. The Town Council’s Estate Manager responded with enthusiasm and suggested that he and his team could design and make a great bench that would be better value and more durable that anything currently on the market.
Thus, the new, rugged BUCKINGHAM ACCESSIBLE PICNIC BENCH has been built and installed in Bourton Park.”
The audio version of the summer 2019 Buckingham Town Matters newsletter is now online. If you would like any more information about anything you have heard or read about in the newsletter, please get in touch with the Town Council Office.
To find a PDF version of this newsletter, and previous editions of the Buckingham Town Matters newsletters since 2010, visit our publications page.
An extra 25,000 Chub and Dace were added to the River Great Ouse today, 12th July, along the stretch between Radclive to Thornborough Mill by the Environment Agency.
This is the second restock by the Environment Agency in the Buckingham area after a pollution incident in the summer of 2018, and is a great step forward for the recovery of the river. Other positive signs have been noted by residents and River Wardens in the last year, including video footage of otters emerging from the river.
Today’s restock took place near Hunter St Bridge and in Bourton Park within Buckingham.
To learn more about how you can be involved in caring for the river in Buckingham, read about the River Wardens scheme on our Buckingham Parks page.
Visit buckingham-tc.gov.uk/our-services/parks-and-green-spaces to explore and discover more.
The new parks guide has been developed as part of making Buckingham’s Town Council website more accessible and mobile phone friendly.
What else would you like to see covered in more detail on your Town Council site?