Newsletter February 2024


The Seats at the Front of the Old Town hall
Planning Report
Green and leafy Buckingham
Obituary: Pat Phillips
Tree Observations
Candlemas: The Last Day of Christmas
Planning: More Housing Growth on the Way?
Low Life in Buckingham
The Shoebox Doll’s House

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Buckingham Society Events 2024

The core events programme for the year 2024 are: –

June: Curated walk at Evenley Wood Garden.
July: Summer lecture and garden party.
August: Wine tasting.
details will be circulated nearer the time and will be supplemented by additional events.

Newsletter September 2023

Reports: –
View from the Chair – Ian Orton
Planning – Carolyn Cumming
Bernie Marsden: A Buckingham Great – Ian Orton
Canteen Food – Ed Grimsdale
The Common Swift – Sue Hethrington
Local Wildlife Observations – Mary Melluish
The appalling cost of UK infrastructure – Ian Orton
Evenley Wood Garden
Forthcoming Events

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Buckingham Society Lecture and Garden Party 20th July 2023


The annual lecture was held in the Vinson Centre Auditorium and was attended by over 100 people, both members and non-members. The lecture was given by Dan Winter, Head Gardener at Evenley Wood.
Dan said that he had been at Evenley since November 2020. We learned that Evenley Wood Garden is set amongst the beautiful Northamptonshire
countryside, and is 60-acre of privately owned woodland garden containing a large and notable collection of plants; ranging from rare and unusual trees and shrubs to a wide selection of snowdrops, lilies and other bulbs. The garden’s unusual area of acid soil, in this otherwise predominantly alkaline area, provides us the opportunity to grow plants such as rhododendrons, camellias, and magnolias, which would not ordinarily thrive in this location. It was a fascinating lecture stimulating many in the audience to plan a future visit.

Following the lecture the annual garden party was held in the Vinson Building Foyer. There was a generous array of canapes and drinks enjoyed by the 60 guests.



Newsletter June 2023

Reports: –

  • View From the Chair – Ian Orton
  • Members’ contributions to Buckingham recognised by Buckingham Town Council
  • SECRETS, SILK AND CYANIDE – A Synopsis of the Talk by Bill Robins
  • German prisoners – Ed Grimsdale
  • Memories of John Cornwall – Shared in response to Ed Grimsdale’s last article which included a landgirl’s verses from the 1940’s

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Buckingham Society AGM Report 26 November 2022

The Society held its AGM on 26 November at the University of Buckingham’s Vinson Centre under the (acting) chairmanship of Ian Orton.

Around 40 members attended the meeting, although this number could have been inflated by non-members who had come to listen to Warren Whytes talk, which immediately followed.

Mr Orton gave a comprehensive report of the Society’s activities for the year supplemented by contributions by Gill Jones, the membership secretary and David Child, the treasurer.

Gill reported that we now have 193 members compared with 179 a year ago.

According to David the Society finances are in a healthy state. As a consequence there is no need for an increase in subscriptions.

Mr Orton reported that following the end of the Covid-19 pandemic normality had returned with both the executive committee and special interest group meeting on a physical, rather than a virtual, basis.
More importantly, for the second year in succession, the Society was able to reinstate both the annual garden party and lecture as well as the AGM.
For the second year running the Society had a stall at the Celebrate Buckingham Day complete with a Roll the Dice game. This attracted a lot of interest as well as generating new members.
Other social events the Society oversaw during the course of the year included another very interesting tree walk led by Michael Hunt in May.
Michael, one of our members, once again demonstrated his amazing knowledge of our local trees, one of the defining characteristics of the town. Going forward, with Michael’s help, the Society would like to organise more tree walks along with more talks and events.
The Society once again ran its Buckingham Trader of the Year Competition with Smith and Clay winning the title in 2022. Looking forward the Society would like to resume its Buckingham Conservation Awards.
As mentioned above we were again able to reinstate the annual garden party and lecture.
This year, the ever popular Barry Smith, the head gardener at Stowe gave the lecture. The garden party took place in the gardens of Ondaatje Hall, now the home of Professor James Tooley, the University’s vice-chancellor and his wife Cynthia.
Land use planning-related matters continue to dominate the Society’s activities and the annual report outlined both the scope and range of its activities along with the challenges faced going forward.
All the existing members of the executive committee agreed to stand for re-election and were elected unanimously.
Ian Orton was elected as chairman, a post which has remained vacant since the previous AGM.