National Lockdown: impact on Buckingham Town Council services

As of Tuesday 5th January, Buckingham, and the whole country, have entered a new National Lockdown. There is a summary of what this means on our Coronavirus pages, which also contain signposts for local help or a raft of issues that may be impacting on your life at this time. For detailed guidance about the lockdown restrictions please visit the government website.

There are some additional changes to Buckingham Town Council services due to the National Lockdown:

  • Play areas will remain open, however, multi-use games areas and outdoor gym equipment are now closed. Please be patient and do not use equipment while we arrange signage.
  • Buckingham market remains open for essential items.
  • The Food Fair, Pancake Races and other upcoming public events in January and February will be cancelled.
  • Shopmobility will be closed, the Shopmobility building was also impacted by the flooding just before Christmas.
  • Public toilets will remain open.

As in Tier 4 the following additional services are running differently:

  • The Tourist Information Centre and the Tourist Information Centre phone line are closed.
  • Lace Hill Sports and Community Centre is only open for a very small number of allowable bookings.
  • Town Council staff are largely working from home, apart from the Green Spaces Team who continue to work out and about. The green spaces team have worked extremely hard clearing up after the flooding on Christmas Eve. Please help keep our team safe and well by not approaching them while they are working. If you have a query, please call or email the office team, and we will help you.

 

Tier 4: Stay at Home and Buckingham Town Council services

From Sunday 20th December Buckingham became a Tier 4: Stay at home area. This means that there is a very high or very rapidly rising level of Coronavirus Covid-19 infections.

There will be some changes due to Buckingham Town Council services because of the new restrictions, while other services continue:

  • The Tuesday and Saturday Market will continue to run (apart from Boxing Day), however non-essential retail are unable to attend.
  • The Flea Market will not be running.
  • Play areas, outdoor multi-use games areas and outdoor gym equipment will stay open, and the green spaces team will continue working as usual.
  • The Tourist Information Centre and the Tourist Information Centre phone line will be closed.
  • Shopmobility will continue to be open on Saturdays. Users are asked to call in advance.
  • Lace Hill Sports and Community Centre is now closed except for a small number of exempt activities.
  • The Town Council office remains closed to drop in visitors.
  • The cemetery is available for interments as usual and in line with restrictions.

Many local businesses are offering delivery or click and collect options. If you can, please support your community by buying local this Christmas. 

Contacting the Town Council over the Christmas break

If you need to contact the Council over the break, you can call 01280 816 426 between 9.30 am and 4 pm on the following days:

  • Monday 21st December
  • Tuesday 22nd December
  • Wednesday 23rd December
  • Tuesday 29th December
  • Wednesday 30th December

Normal services will resume on Monday 4th January 2021.

Finally, we wish you the best possible time over the Christmas holiday.

We know this is a really tough time for many local residents, families and businesses. If you are struggling and need help, please reach out and ask for support.

Tier 3 restrictions and changes to Buckingham Town Council services

From Saturday 19th December Buckingham will be a Tier 3 area. This means that there is a very high or very rapidly rising level of Coronavirus Covid-19 infections.

There will be some changes due to Buckingham Town Council services because of the new restrictions, while other services continue:

  • The Tuesday and Saturday Market will continue to run (apart from Boxing Day)
  • The Flea Market will not be running.
  • Play areas, outdoor multi-use games areas and outdoor gym equipment will stay open, and the green spaces team will continue working as usual.
  • The Tourist Information Centre and the Tourist Information Centre phone line will be closed.
  • Shopmobility will continue to be open and available on Saturdays.
  • Lace Hill Sports and Community Centre bookings can continue where permitted.
  • The Town Council office remains closed to drop in visitors.
  • The cemetery is available for interments as usual and in line with restrictions.

Many local businesses are offering delivery or click and collect options. If you can, please support your community by buying local this Christmas. 

Contacting the Town Council over the Christmas break

If you need to contact the Council over the break, you can call 01280 816 426 between 9.30 am and 4 pm on the following days:

  • Monday 21st December
  • Tuesday 22nd December
  • Wednesday 23rd December
  • Tuesday 29th December
  • Wednesday 30th December

Normal services will resume on Monday 4th January 2021.

Finally, we wish you the best possible time over the Christmas holiday.

We know this is a really tough time for many local residents, families and businesses. If you are struggling and need help, please reach out and ask for support.

 

Impact of Coronavirus Measures on Buckingham Town Council Services

Following the Government’s announcement of new national restrictions to reduce the spread of Covid-19, Buckingham Town Council has reduced and removed some services for the duration of the new measures.

Grounds Maintenance

The Grounds Maintenance Team are continuing to work to maintain Bourton and Chandos Parks, green spaces and the cemetery.  Burials will continue to be arranged.

Play areas will remain open and 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.

Multi Use Games Areas and adult outdoor gym equipment will be closed in line with the new restrictions.

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.

Markets

The Town’s markets remain very much open.  The market provides people with a low risk outdoor place to shop for essential supplies.  Stalls are placed apart from each other and socially distanced queuing remains in place.  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.

Tourist Information Centre

The Tourist Information Centre has been closed temporarily.  However, staff are still available to answer queries by telephone and email during working hours:

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

Lace Hill Sports and Community Centre

The Centre will be closed, except for a very small number of users who meet the new requirements.

Events

No Town Council events are now planned for December.  The events programme for 2021 will be reviewed in the New Year.

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 or by phone 01280 826426.

Play Areas Open Image showing Otters Brook play area
Multi Use Games Areas closed showing roped off area
Outdoor Gyms closed sign showing trim trail in park
Stop: outdoor staff may be working in the parks, please do not approach them
Tourist Information Centre, Shopmobility and Lace Hill buildings

Cancellation of autumn and Christmas events

Buckingham Charter Fair

Buckingham Charter Fairs have been cancelled for 2020. Nichols Amusements have decided not to hold the Buckingham fair in 2020 in light of advice received from the Aylesbury Vale Safety Advisory Group and the Town Council. The Head Showman, Marshall Nichols will bring in one small stall on Saturday 17th and Saturday 24thOctober, when the fair would have been held. This will mean that the town is able to retain the royal charters for the two fairs.

The risks of being a focal point for transmission of Covid 19 are too high for the event to be safe, and it would be “very difficult if not impossible” for this event to go ahead while complying with the health protection regulations. The SAG has written to the Council to say that it the view of the SAG that it would be “very difficult if not impossible for (the fair) to go ahead while complying with the health protection regulations as set out.”

Councillor Robin Stuchbury, Chairman of the Town and Centre Committee said that, “the committee had some very important decisions to make about future events in the light of concerns about whether they could be held safely. We are grateful to Mr Marshall Nichols for the care he has demonstrated for the people of Buckingham. The decision not to bring in the fair this year demonstrates both his respect for the town of Buckingham and the well-being of the families who visit the charter fair each year.”

Bonfire & Fireworks Display

The Town Centre & Events committee met Thursday evening and made the decision that this year’s Bonfire & Firework Display should be cancelled for 2020.

The event which is held in Bourton Park and organised by Buckingham Town Council draws a large crowd each year and as with other events it would be impossible to comply with the health protection regulations.

Christmas Light Switch On

The annual Christmas Light Switch On which is organised by Buckingham Town Council is to be cancelled for 2020.

The area outside the Old Gaol where the event takes place and the number of people that participate as well as number of attendees, would be a focal point for transmission of Covid 19. It would be very difficult to comply with the health protection regulations as set out.

The Town Centre & Events Committee will be considering activities that residents can participate in safely from home in the next few weeks.

Remembrance Day Parade and Christmas Parade

Buckingham Town Council provides the road closures for the Remembrance Day Parade and the Christmas Parade.  The Town Council will also regrettably not be able to provide these for 2020.

The Royal British Legion organise the wreath laying and service at the war memorial and details regarding this will be announced by them at a future date.

The Christmas Parade Committee has already decided to cancel this year’s Christmas Parade due to Covid 19.

Enquiries

Please contact the Events Coordinator, Amanda Brubaker via email at events@buckingham-tc.gov.uk.

Online Council Meetings

Buckingham Town Council will be holding all council meetings via Zoom until the Government advises that it is safe to resume face to face meetings. The meetings will be broadcast on the Council’s YouTube channel for anyone who wishes to watch.

Members of the public will also be able to directly participate via Zoom during the 15-minute public session at the start of each meeting in the usual way. If you would like to speak during this time or submit a written question please contact the Committee Clerk by emailing committeeclerk@buckingham-tc.gov.uk or calling 01280 823020.

Instructions on how to download and log on via Zoom can be found on the Town Council website where you can also find a full calendar of meetings. Clicking on the meeting you are interested in will open an agenda pack.  At the top of each agenda there is a Zoom meeting code and password to gain access.

Meetings will be streamed on the ‘Buckingham Town Council’ YouTube channel.  They start at 7pm on Monday evenings. The first virtual streamed meeting will be a joint Interim Council/Planning meeting on Monday 20th April. This follows the implementation of section 78 of the Coronavirus Act 2020 which allows meetings to take place online.  The Coronavirus Act also gives the press and public the right to attend meetings virtually.

If you are struggling to gain access or have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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.

To keep up to date with current and accurate information about Coronavirus Covid-19 itself, stick to trusted sources; visit the Government Coronavirus page and 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.

Financial Problems?

Many people's lives have been impacted by Coronavirus and lockdown. If you are now having financial problems and need help and advice there are places you can turn for help.

Coronavirus: volunteer

Coronavirus: how can you help?

To keep up to date with current and accurate information about Coronavirus Covid-19 itself, stick to trusted sources; visit the Government Coronavirus page and the NHS coronavirus page which have information about the virus, symptoms, self-isolating, and travel. Sign Health offers daily updates on Coronavirus in British Sign Language.

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

Information Centre by Phone and Online

Buckingham Tourist Information Centre may have closed its doors for now, but we are still committed to helping anyone that needs it. We have set up a support line for Buckingham residents that don’t have access to the internet and need information on where to find help, essential travel information, local business closures and opening times.

We are currently compiling a list of information that we think people will need, but please let us know if you are doing something for the community or if you are a local business with a change to your circumstances. We don’t know everything, but we will try our best to help in any way we can. Contact us on 01280 823020 or email tic@buckingham-tc.gov.uk