Buckingham Fringe Week – Stargazing From Your Back Garden

On Saturday 11th July, join in with an online zoom presentation at 7pm and chat with Ross Hockman of UK Astronomy. If you would like to attend, please contact our Events Co-ordinator via email on events@buckingham-tc.gov.uk for the meeting’s details.UK Astronomy is a locally based charity set up by a husband and wife to help teach others about the skies above them, they travel the Buckinghamshire area educating community groups, schools and do stargazing events. Ross said “Throughout lock down we have been doing I SPY IN YOUR GARDEN SKIES helping get people out in their gardens enjoying them and have seen a huge increase in numbers joining our Facebook group and this hobby. For more info please do visit us at www.ukastronomy.org.

VE Day Friday 8th May 2020

VE stands for Victory in Europe, and VE Day celebrates 75 years since the guns fell silent at the end of World War II.

Some of the Country's original VE Day celebrations are now sadly unable to take place. But that doesn't mean we can't celebrate from home! There are lots of ideas for different ways residents can join in.

 

Buckingham Events

Our Town Crier has risen to the challenge and will be making a special Cry for Peace.

The current schedule is as follows:

11:00 am: Join in the nationwide two minutes silence on your doorstep

2:55 pm: Bugler will play Last Post and Reveille

3:00 pm: Nation's Toast to Heroes of WW2

3:00 pm: Piper playing Battles O'er and VE Day 75

6.55 pm: Town Crier's Cry for Peace

Nation's Toast to the Heroes of WW2

VE Day celebration organisers are encouraging everyone to undertake the ‘Nation’s Toast to the Heroes of WW2’ at 3pm on the 8th May, from the safety of your own home, stand up and raise a glass of refreshment and undertake the following ‘Toast’: “To those who gave so much, we thank you."

This toast is an opportunity to pay tribute to the many millions at home and abroad that gave so much to ensure we all enjoy and share the freedom we have today.

Great British Bunting

BBC Radio stations have banded together with a great craft idea. Raid the house for supplies and make some Great British Bunting! A great way to show your pride and honour the men and women of WW2 over this special long weekend.

"You can decorate your bunting with pictures of whatever inspires you, whether it’s those who fought on the frontline or worked hard on the Homefront, or whether it’s a celebration of enduring peace or your own personal hero."

Easter in Buckingham

A message from The Mayor, Councillor Mark Cole JP:

thank you from buckingham mayor coronavirus“May I say a big thank you to everybody in Buckingham and district who has helped to reduce the risks of Covoid-19, not only those in the front line – NHS staff, carers, postal workers, council staff, refuse collectors, and food, foodbank and prescription deliverers – but to all those who are respecting Government guidelines by staying at home for all but the most essential trips to food and pharmacy outlets, or exercise.

“In line with Government advice, our town parks will be open for everyone to enjoy this Easter, but for obvious reasons the play areas will remain shut. Whether in the parks, the estates, or in the countryside, please keep your distance from others, and if you are a dog walker keep your dog on a lead – notices will remind everyone of this – and together we can beat this contagion.”

Easter Activities

Buckingham Town Council are inviting residents to create Easter bonnets!   If you’re stuck for what to use or may struggle to get materials, try using the things that are already accessible in your house and garden first.

Here are just a few materials you can use to make your very own Easter bonnet;

  • A hatImage of our Happy Easter colouring activity
  • Paper or Card
  • Colouring pens and pencils
  • Cotton Wool
  • Ribbon
  • Glitter or Sequins
  • Flowers
  • Glue
  • Scissors

Don’t forget your can create Easter Eggs for our Easter Egg Hunt too.

Post your creations to the Town Council’s Facebook and Instagram pages and use our #BucksBonnets so everyone can join in.

And why not wear your bonnet while you exercise over the weekend…

Covid 19 Information for Buckingham

Buckingham Town Council has published a Coronavirus web page giving links to local groups providing support, coordinating volunteers and seeking resources to do more in this challenging time.

The page is being updated each working day with any new information specific to Buckingham.  The Council is also using its Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages to provide up to date information on its services and those of other organisations in the town.

This includes links to local businesses who are offering additional services at this time.  As well as local groups and services who are providing support to those who need it and who are seeking more volunteers.

Play Areas

The Town Council’s play areas remain closed for the time being, i.e. those in Bourton Park (junior and senior), Chandos Park, Badgers Estate (Otters Brook), Meadway (Ken Tagg) and Lace Hill, along with the outdoor sports and exercise equipment in Bourton Park.  The same applies to the other eight play parks in Buckingham not managed by the Town Council.

Parks and Green Spaces

The Town Council’s parks remain open for exercise for the Bank Holiday weekend, however everyone who is visiting parks and open spaces must maintain social distancing, keeping at least 2m from each other. This means please avoid narrow paths, as well as thinking carefully about activities you may do there. The parks should be used as routes to exercise through, not as places to remain in.

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.

The Grounds Maintenance Team are continuing to maintain Bourton and Chandos Parks, green spaces and the cemetery.  Grass cutting has started for the new season, including on grass verges and vision splays.

The Team will be checking the parks are safe and emptying bins over the Bank Holiday weekend.  However, members of the public are asked to remember that Town Council staff have been instructed to have minimal direct contact while they are at work, so all questions about Council services should be made by phone or email wherever possible.

The Buckingham Road Cemetery remains open in the usual way but the same social distancing principles apply.

Markets

The town’s Tuesday and Saturday markets remain open to stalls selling essential food and goods.  The market provides people with a low risk outdoor place to shop for essential supplies.

Shopmobility

The Shopmobility Service remains closed temporarily

Tourist Information Centre

Tourist Information Centre staff are still available to answer queries by telephone and email during the Centre’s usual working hours:

Opening Hours
Monday – Saturday, 10.00am to 4.00pm
Contact Us
Phone: 01280 823 020
Email: TIC@buckingham-tc.gov.uk
Web: www.buckinghamoldgaol.org.uk

Coronavirus: if you need help

Coronavirus: what if I need help?

There is always help available in Buckingham.

Information about Coronavirus is being updated rapidly. To keep up to date with current and accurate information stick to trusted sources; visit the NHS coronavirus page which has information about the virus, symptoms, self-isolating, and travel.

Food and essentials

If you are in isolation or advised to stay at home you may be worried about how to get food and other essentials going forward. As a first option, always choose to ask someone you know personally and trust (or a business you trust) for help with food deliveries or prescriptions.

If you are able to afford food, but having difficulty getting a delivery slot, you can ask the Buckingham Support Network if a volunteer may be able to deliver essentials to your house.

As many local businesses are now planning to open their doors, the town council is no longer keeping a list of specific shops and restaurants that deliver. If you aren't sure, please contact your favourite shop to ask, alternatively Cllr. Warren Whyte is keeping a list on Facebook.

Wearing a face mask is an essential thing to do when you are in enclosed public places where it's more difficult to follow social distancing rules. These places include shops, public transport, restaurants and even when walking down your local high street.

The use of face coverings in public places may reduce the spread of infection when worn by people who might not realise they’re infected. This is why we are encouraging people who live, work or visit Buckingham to wear them if they can.

Downloadable self-isolating poster and high risk household poster for deliveries are available.

Medical Help

If you think you may have Coronavirus and need medical help, please use the NHS 111 symptom checker service for help. 

If you have questions for The Swan Practice about prescriptions or appointments, please check their website which is being kept up to date with the latest news.

Pharmacies may by operating with different opening hours in order to keep up with the demand for prescriptions. They may have longer lunch breaks or open later and close earlier. This helps them ensure everyone gets their medication.

Some people are considered at very high risk of severe illness if they catch Coronavirus (Covid-19) These people should have received a letter from the government highlighting them as vulnerable, and giving them advice on actions to take over the coming months. If you are not sure if this includes you or someone you care for, there is more information on the government website.

A small group of these people have been identified as extremely vulnerable. The advice for this group is different. Extremely vulnerable people were advised to 'shield' which includes staying home for at least 12 weeks from the time they receive their letter. Many companies have therefore said that they will prioritise those classified as extremely vulnerable for access to deliveries, including Sainsbury's.

If you have not received a letter, but think you should have, you can still register with the government as an extremely vulnerable person on their website or by calling the helpline on 0800 0288327. This is particularly important if you think you may need help getting deliveries of food or essentials, and will help you access food deliveries.

There are a number of other groups offering additional help and advice to those shielding:

  • Buckingham Hub runs from Buckingham Library and can offer support coordinated by Buckinghamshire Council including emergency food parcels.
  • Prevention Matters offer help and advice
  • If you are concerned about an extremely vulnerable person who might need help, call Buckinghamshire Council on their a 24 hour phone number – 01296 383 204 – this number is specifically for calls relating to coronavirus only.
  • Buckinghamshire Adult Social Care team are also reaching out to vulnerable people they are aware of. If you know of someone who might need their help, call the Adult Social Care team on 01296 383 402.
  • Downloadable high risk household poster

A new mental health helpline has been launched for those living in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire. The helpline runs in a similar way to 111. People can call when they need to find out when and where to get help and to access support from mental health professionals.

Adults: 01865 904 997

Children and young people: 01865 904 998

When someone is seriously ill or injured, or in an acute confused state, call 999.

Transport

If you are an elderly or vulnerable bus pass user, Buckinghamshire Council has asked all bus companies to accept bus passes at any time of day so that you can access early opening hours for shops. For updates on bus timetables you can check the Buckingham Council buses page.

Remember, all bus and public transport users now need to wear a face mask.

Parking charges at Buckinghamshire Council carparks including Cornwalls Meadow in Buckingham are currently being waived, meaning that you can park for free while you shop or visit Buckingham.

Face Masks

Wearing a face mask is an essential thing to do when you are in enclosed public places where it's more difficult to follow social distancing rules. These places include shops, public transport, restaurants and even when walking down your local high street.

The use of face coverings in public places may reduce the spread of infection when worn by people who might not realise they’re infected. This is why we are encouraging people who live, work or visit Buckingham to wear them if they can.

 

There are lots of places where you can purchase face masks from like local shops and organisations or online retailers.

Want to purchase a mask? Visit our Tourist Information Centre and buy yours today! They come in sizes; Small, Medium and Large for £6. They are locally sourced and supplied by Pin Clothing.

Financial Problems?

Many people's lives have changed hugely over the last few weeks. If you are now having financial problems and need help and advice there are places you can turn for help.

The long running Buckingham Food Bank are able to provide food to those in financial need through referral systems.

The Buckingham Foodbank is available for anyone in North Buckinghamshire struggling with food poverty. Please visit their website for information about how to apply for a food bank.

As well as being able to refer families and individuals to Buckingham foodbank, Citizens' Advice can also help with any questions or difficulties you may have regarding:

  • Managing money
  • Debt
  • Benefits
  • Housing
  • Employment

If you are concerned about paying your bills, as a first step we recommend contacting your usual providers and asking what support they may be offering at this time.

If you think you might be eligible, we recommend you apply for Universal Credit as soon as possible. We are hearing reports that phone lines are very busy and calling outside of peak times may help. Telephone: 0800 328 5644

Get everything you will need to apply ready for your application before you try and claim.

The government advice pages can tell you more about Universal Credit.

Coronavirus Scams warning

Stay safe everyone, if you are concerned that you or someone you know has been a victim of fraud please contact: Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 and contact your bank.

For advice call the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 223 11 33

 

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme

There are grants available from the government for self-employed people. Please check the government website for more information and how to apply.

Grants

Buckinghamshire Business First, Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership and Buckinghamshire Council have been working on local programs to help support struggling local businesses.

Grants are available from the following local organisations:

Bucks Business First.

COVID-19 Business Resilience Fund page.

Buckinghamshire Council Business Support Hub.

Buckinghamshire Council offers a Local Emergency Fund, this can help residents of Buckinghamshire in need with access to food banks, food vouchers and meter top ups.

You can also contact the Council by calling 01296 395000 to ask about government food boxes which are being delivered to those considered Extremely Vulnerable.

Coronavirus: help with social activity during self-isolation

Going into self-isolation can feel intimidating. We've talked about the practical side above, but staying mainly or totally at home for two weeks or twelve can still be part of a community effort. Mind has advice about looking after your mental health while in social isolation, and on social media we have seen lots of ideas for ways to keep entertained.

The Town Council may have had to postpone or cancel local events, but there are lots of wonderful group events continuing across social media platforms, from virtual Choirs to exercise classes and art projects. Share your efforts and make new connections with others trying the same things.

We love Isolation Examination! Buckingham's own weekly quiz. Follow them on Facebook to join in every Wednesday at 8pm.

Two facebook groups are also advertising online events:

Video calling is a great way to get in touch with people, with several different platforms offering video calls for free - if you haven't tried them before it's a great time now.

Tourist Information Centre/Shopmobilty

The Tourist Information Centre has now opened again, however the phone lines are still open to enquiries. Please pass this phone number: 01280 823 020 to anyone without access to the internet for help with inquiries about Buckingham, from public transport to what shops are open and more, the Tourist Information Centre team will try and find you answer.

Shopmobility it still closed, however enquiries are welcome via the phone number above.

Contact Us

The data obtained will only be used with regards to this enquiry and will not be used for future marketing or passed on to any third parties. This is in accordance with GDPR. By filling in the information you give your explicit consent for your data to be used for this purpose only. For more information please read our privacy policy.

Coronavirus: volunteer

Coronavirus: how can you help?

Information about Coronavirus is being updated rapidly. To keep up to date with current and accurate information stick to trusted sources; visit the NHS coronavirus page which has information about the virus, symptoms, self-isolating, and travel.

Use the tabs below to find out more about volunteering opportunities.

Buckinghamshire Council is implementing a community support hub system. For more information about ways you can be involved, please check their website.

We will update this entry as more information becomes available. 

Buckingham Foodbank are collecting food donations to distribute to those who cannot afford to buy food.

The food bank are looking for donations of soups, tinned meats, tinned veg and fruit, beans, pasta, rice and other similar non-perishable goods. You may see trolleys out for donations at local supermarkets. You can also donate at:

The Centre, Verney Close
10.30 am to 11.30am 
Tuesdays 
(Car park entrance)

Donations are hugely appreciated and make a real difference to those in need.

Being able to self isolate effectively is really important to help stop the spread of Covid-19/Coronavirus. If you can, please volunteer to check on your neighbours and support them if needed. You can do this by:

King's College London is doing research into Covid-19.

By taking 1-minute to self-report daily, even if you are well, you can help scientists identify:

  • High-risk areas in the UK
  • Who is most at risk, by better understanding symptoms linked to underlying health conditions
  • How fast the virus is spreading in your area.

Sign up online!

Every Monday-Wednesday you can take part in Eat Out to Help Out!

Lots of fantastic Buckingham restaurants and cafes are participating, enter your postcode to check the list.Eat out to help out, up to £10 off monday to wednesdays at participating local restaurants

Going into self-isolation can feel intimidating. We've talked about the practical side above, but staying mainly or totally at home for two weeks or twelve can still be part of a community effort. Mind has advice about looking after your mental health while in social isolation.

Many groups and social activity groups are making use of online facilities including YouTube, Skype and Zoom.

Social media and video platforms are also fantastic ways to keep in touch with family and friends. If you know someone who would enjoy online activities and needs help to get connected, why not give them a call and see if you can help them get started?

Our events calendar is also now looking a little empty - if you are offering a FREE  online or socially distant class, concert, poetry slam or anything fun frankly and are based in the Buckingham area, let us know and we will add your event to our events calendar.

Two facebook groups are also advertising online events:

If you would rather donate money, many charities are looking for donations at this time.

Heart of Bucks are coordinating a Coronavirus Response Fund that will be distributed directly to individuals in need, as well as local groups best able to support individuals in their areas. To donate directly, visit Total Giving.

Local hospitals also have their own fundraising groups, and many are giving detailed information about the kind of donations they can and can't accept. Visit their pages for more information.

Members of the public can sign up quickly and easily at goodsamapp.org/NHS to become NHS Volunteer Responders, and can be called on to do simple but vital tasks such as:

  • delivering medicines from pharmacies;
  • driving patients to appointments;
  • bringing them home from hospital;
  • or making regular phone calls to check on people isolating at home.

Both Shopmobility and the Tourist Information Centre have closed their offices, however the phone lines are still open to enquiries. Please pass this phone number: 01280 823 020 to anyone without access to the internet for help with inquiries about Buckingham, from public transport to what shops are open and more, the Tourist Information Centre team will try and find you answer.

Do you have an idea for a new project?

Are you running a project now and need help or advice? Community Impact Bucks is a great resource for community groups and can give lots of useful advice, including training videos for volunteers and accessing funding.

A national campaign, For the Love of Scrubs is looking for volunteers to sew sets of scrubs for NHS use. There is a local facebook group coordinating volunteers.

Both Milton Keynes Hospital and The Swan Practice have said they would be delighted to accept donations.

Many shops, pubs and restaurants have now reopened. Whether it's by appointment, two in a store at a time or a stall at the market, check out your favourite shop's website, social media or call them to find out details about how they will be opening.

Buckingham Town Council is asking companies, self-employed and all other traders in the town to help think about what can be done to help businesses reopen, support the high street and develop online sales from the town.

The Council has developed a Contact Form to allow us to understand what help and support local business may need to reopen and thrive post lock down. Please send your completed contact form to - admin@buckingham-tc.gov.uk

Wearing a face mask is an essential thing to do when you are in enclosed public places where it's more difficult to follow social distancing rules. These places include shops, public transport, restaurants and even when walking down your local high street.

The use of face coverings in public places may reduce the spread of infection when worn by people who might not realise they’re infected. This is why we are encouraging people who live, work or visit Buckingham to wear them if they can. Want to purchase a mask? Visit our Tourist Information Centre and buy yours today! They come in sizes; Small, Medium and Large for £6.

Even though we want to encourage people to wear masks, some of us can't because of various disabilities. Not all disabilities are visibly obvious such as learning difficulties, mental health, mobility, speech, visual or hearing impairments.

The Hidden Disabilities charity has a sunflower scheme which allows people with hidden disabilities to obtain lanyards, wristbands or wallet cards that has a sunflower logo on. If you see someone wearing or using any of those items with the sunflower logo on, you may need to give them some additional support, help or a little more time.

Since the launch of the Sunflower Lanyard in 2016, the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower has now been adopted globally by major airports and venues and in the UK, by many supermarkets, railway and coach stations, leisure facilities, the NHS, a number of emergency services, and many small and large businesses.

The sunflower suggests happiness, positivity, strength as well as growth and confidence. It intends to allow everyone with Hidden Disabilities to choose to be visible when they need to be.

 

Contact Us

The data obtained will only be used with regards to this enquiry and will not be used for future marketing or passed on to any third parties. This is in accordance with GDPR. By filling in the information you give your explicit consent for your data to be used for this purpose only. For more information please read our privacy policy.

Impact of Coronavirus Measures on Buckingham Town Council Services

Grounds Maintenance

The Grounds Maintenance Team are continuing to work to maintain Bourton and Chandos Parks, green spaces and cemetery.  Grass cutting will soon start again, including on grass verges and vision splays.

Play area checks and repairs will continue.  Parents and guardians should take appropriate steps to ensure children’s safety and hygiene is projected when using equipment.

Members of the public are asked to remember that Town Council staff have been instructed to have minimal direct contact while they are at work, so all questions about Council services should be made by phone or email wherever possible.

UPDATE AS OF 24th March – ALL play areas and outdoor gym equipment across Buckingham is now closed. 

25th March – Public toilets are closed

Markets

The Town’s markets remain very much open, and are proving more popular than ever.  The market provides people with a low risk outdoor place to shop for essential supplies.  All stall holders have been asked to make sure they have some means of hand washing at their stall which they should use regularly.  This is a great way to support local businesses at this time.

Shopmobility

The Shopmobility Service is now closed temporarily, due to a reduced demand and to protect staff.

Tourist Information Centre

The Tourist Information Centre has been closed temporarily, following the closure of the Old Gaol.  However, staff are still available to answer queries by telephone and email during the Centre’s usual working hours:

Opening Hours

Monday – Saturday, 10.00am to 4.00pm

Contact Us

Phone: 01280 823 020

Email: TIC@buckingham-tc.gov.uk

Web: www.buckinghamoldgaol.org.uk

Lace Hill Sports and Community Centre

The centre remains open for hire but not for general public access by drop in.  Hirers are being asked to keep their activities under review, and to ensure all users follow the government’s hygiene advice.  Many activities have now been put on hold, so do check before visiting the Centre.

Events

  • The Funeral Fair, Death Café and Civic Service have been cancelled owing to the low numbers forecast to attend, and requests from stallholders and attendees not to go ahead.
  • The Annual Town Meeting has been postponed.
  • The Easter event planned for 5th April at the Lace Hill Community Centre has been cancelled.
  • Music in the Market will also not go ahead.
  • The planned VE Day celebration will now be held as a combined event to mark VJ Day on 15th August.  More details will follow.

Decisions about events planned for later in the year will be made at a later date.

Town Council Office

The Town Council office is now closed to visitors.  However staff are still working and phone calls and emails will be responded to in the usual way: office@buckingham-tc.gov.uk  01280 826426.

Coronavirus: Help in Buckingham

Featured

Information about Coronavirus is being updated rapidly. To keep up to date with current and accurate information stick to trusted sources; visit the NHS coronavirus page which has information about the virus, symptoms, self-isolating, and travel. Sign Health offers daily updates on Coronavirus in British Sign Language.

Buckingham is a great community: many groups have come together to try and work out how they can help elderly or self-isolating residents over the coming months.

Visit our Coronavirus: volunteer page to find out more about opportunities to support our community, locally and nationally.

how can you help banner

 

For a summary of help available, from local offers to national schemes, please visit our Coronavirus: if you need help page.

what if i need help banner

Shops and services re-opening

We are delighted that many shops, services and facilities have now been able to reopen. Many are now operating with covid-secure rules in place. For example, you need to wear a mask while taking the bus, and might be asked to queue in a particular location or to book a slot to visit your favourite shops. Many shops and restaurants are also still offering delivery or collection options if you would prefer to shop that way.

Please continue to support our local shops, restaurants and businesses!

The Town Council Office and Shopmobility are closed, but staff are still working. For full details, see our Town Council statement about Lace Hill Community Centre, the Tourist Information Centre and Toilets in Chandos Park as well as Cornwalls Meadow. Play areas have also now been opened.

For more information about services run by Buckinghamshire Council, including buses, please check the Buckinghamshire Council page.

COVID-19 Business Measures

Buckingham Town Council is asking companies, self-employed and all other traders in the town to help think about what can be done to help businesses reopen, support the high street and develop online sales from the town.

The Council has developed a Contact Form to allow us to understand what help and support local business may need to reopen and thrive post lock down. Please send your completed contact form to - admin@buckingham-tc.gov.uk

Contact Us

The data obtained will only be used with regards to this enquiry and will not be used for future marketing or passed on to any third parties. This is in accordance with GDPR. By filling in the information you give your explicit consent for your data to be used for this purpose only. For more information please read our privacy policy.

The Bard of Buckingham – Bardic Trial

The first Buckingham Bardic Trial will be held in the Cote at the rear of The Woolpack pub, on Tuesday 1 October from 7pm – 9pm.  The event will include the election of Buckingham’s first Bard and Deputy Bard.

Each potential Bard will be asked to present one piece of relevant to the theme ‘Buckingham’, which should last a maximum of 5 minutes (less is fine).

Potential Bards are encouraged to register beforehand, although it will be possible to just turn up on the night.  It is free to enter; however, a collection will be made on the night for the Mayor’s charities. If you are interested in taking part in the trial or would like more information contact the Town Clerk on townclerk@buckingham-tc.gov.

Grants for 2020/21 are now open!

Do you think Buckingham needs a community fridge? Does your sports club need new equipment? A support group for a health condition? Is there an environmental project your group would love to run?

Buckingham Town Council’s grant process is now open for the financial year 2020/2021. The process to apply is simple – complete a form for Buckingham Town

Council to consider, along with information about the group that is applying for funding and get it back to us by 12 noon on Friday 1st November.

A few rules apply:

  1. Grants will only be considered for projects and activities beneficial to the people of Buckingham.
  2. Grant recipients must be based in Buckingham or provide evidence of the percentage of the work that is conducted in or on behalf of Buckingham residents.
  3. No commercial organisation will be considered for a grant.

More information and copies of the forms are available on the Grant Applications page.