Presentation at Post Office the Gingerbread House on Thursday 7th October to Sunil and Rita Gandhi

After 17 years in Buckingham, Sunil and Rita Gandhi left the Post Office at the Gingerbread House for the last time on Monday October 11th.

Throughout those 17 years Sunil and Rita provided a simply brilliant service to all of their customers as could be seen from the great tributes posted on Facebook where people almost queued up to sing their praises. Always ready with a smile, a kind word and good advice, Sunil and Rita will be missed.

To mark the occasion of their leaving, at the suggestion of Buckingham Society member Una Robinson the Society presented Sunil and Rita with a framed print showing a series of pictures of notable Buckingham buildings.

The print was taken from an original painting by Buckingham Society member Peter Bowtell.
The picture shows Una with Rita and Sunil and Society Membership Secretary Gill Jones.

Annual Lecture by Bill Robins “Secrets Silk and Cyanide” 25 October

Annual Lecture:  Bill Robins “Secrets Silk and Cyanide”                                                7.15pm Auditorium Vinson Building
SECRETS, SILK AND CYANIDE

During the Second World War, many of the great houses around North Buckinghamshire supported venomous secret wars, conducted lethally beneath the titanic battles around the globe. Much about them has stayed in secret archives since 1945. Historians are now unwrapping more.

Bill Robins will present an overview of the key agencies behind these operations and what they did around North Buckinghamshire. He will then focus on the Special Operations Executive (SOE), its stations at Poundon and Grendon Underwood and their vital role in communicating with agents operating undercover to support resistance movements in Europe.

He will cover the vital work of the women of the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry (FANY) in support of SOE and will cover its frequently toxic relationship with its sister agency, the Secret Intelligence Service (SIS). Finally, he will talk about some of its triumphs and disasters and about a few of the courageous women and men who lived and died for it.

The Speaker: Major General Bill Robins designed and operated military and intelligence communications for the UK armed forces, other government departments and our allies during the Cold War and its messy aftermath.

 

Railway Information Board unveiling

The railway came to Buckingham in 1850.  It could have been here even earlier, complete with a large locomotive and carriage works if, as is generally believed, that plan hadn’t been scuppered by the First Duke of Buckingham & Chandos who would not allow the railway line to cross his estate at Stowe. So, instead the line went via Wolverton – how different Buckingham might have been if the original plan had gone ahead!

The line lasted until 1964 when passenger services were stopped. Final total closure took place in 1966 with the last train arriving on April 4th carrying Her Majesty the Queen who had come on a visit to Buckingham. That visit, along with other important events in the life of Buckingham’s railway, is celebrated in a new information board that has been installed by the Buckingham Society on the remains of the former station along the Railway Walk next to the University of Buckingham’s car park in Station Road.

Funded with the help of the Buckingham and Villages Community Board, the information board was unveiled by Franz Rothe, a lifelong Buckingham resident who first suggested the idea in a letter to the Advertiser a few years ago. The Buckingham Society hopes that people strolling along the Railway Walk, which follows the former railway line, will find the board of interest.

The picture shows Franz standing alongside the information board between Roger Edwards, Chair of the Buckingham Society, and James Tooley, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Buckingham.

 

Celebrate Buckingham 4th Sept 2021

At last, the sun shone, the grey skies so prevalent this summer were banished, and it was Celebrate Buckingham Day. Based on the Civic Day celebrations started several years ago by the Buckingham Society, this was the much expanded, Town Council version. Many organisations from around the town set up stalls in Bourton Park to advertise themselves and the populous turned out to watch the new mayor, Margaret Gately, be robed in all her finery, to listen to music from the Winslow Concert Band and the Buckingham Ukulele Group and to have fun.

The Buckingham Society’s stall had a simple game, “Roll the Dice to Win a Pig” – throw five dice and the highest score wins. It was not, unsurprisingly, actually a real pig but vouchers for pork related products donated by our local in-town butcher “Smith and Clay”. And for the vegetarians, there were Waitrose vouchers to buy fruit and veg. Children had Percy and Peppa Pig products to compete for. A good time was had by all.

 

Lecture & Summer Garden Party

The annual Summer Garden Party this year began with a talk by Annabel Page who is the Project Officer for Natural Flood Management at the River Thame Conservation Trust.

Held in the lecture theatre of the Vinson Building at the University of Buckingham, it was an excellent opportunity to see so many people in person we had not seen for long due to Covid.

Annabel gave us an illustrated and very detailed presentation of the work she is doing in conceiving environmental strategies for river improvement projects for the River Thame Conservation Trust.
The Trust now operates in both the Thame and the Upper Ouse River catchments.  Her talk focused on Nature-Based Solutions to catchments management, and the Rivers Trust’s current Natural Flood Management project which, it is hoped will be taken up and help reduce the flood risk to Buckingham.

The following links to the River Thame Conservation Trust will allow you to explore the work the trust is doing and importantly to ask questions.

River Thame Trust | Creating valuable environments for people and wildlife

Thame Catchment Plan (arcgis.com)

enquiries@riverthame.org

The Buckingham Society Annual Garden Party:
The garden party which followed the lecture was held in Ondaatje Hall with the kind permission of James Tooley, the University Vice Chancellor. The event was attended by 60 members and guests and the dry weather enabled attendees to explore the Hall’s beautiful gardens, whilst enjoying drinks and canapes. It was a delightful evening which many guests were reluctant to leave!

Meeting with Greg Smith MP

On Friday 13th August 2021 Buckingham MP Greg Smith met members of the Society at the home of Kathy Robins.  Mr Smith said “It was a very positive discussion about all things planning, including reform, the Oxford – Cambridge Arc spatial strategy consultation, flood risk assessment, protecting and enhancing conservation zones, and the importance of keeping planning decisions local.  I look forward to working with the Buckingham Society further”

Kathy said ”We are delighted to have established this link with our MP.  While both sides are clear that we may not always share the same perspective in the future, we are delighted to have laid the foundation for a friendly and productive relationship”.