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.