18th Mar 2024

The maverick brilliance of Bill

Those settlers new to the city might not have heard his name before, but they will know Bill Billings' work. It's scattered all over the expanse of Milton Keynes, raising smiles, still triggering conversations and reminding us of the important role art has to play in everyday life. Because, simply, art matters and no-one understood that better than Bill. In this month's Museum feature, Sammy Jones looks back at the man and his incredible legacy... It is his work that provided Milton Keynes with some of its more fun, unique and off the wall pieces of public art. Those same words are perfect to sum up the creator behind wild and wonderful works like the Peartree Bridge Triceratops, which is part of our new city’s fabric, but still thrills visitors as they drive by it on the V8. Bill was a passionate advocate of the new town and spent decades..

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11th Jun 2023

An ambitious new inclusive building project breaks ground at a local charity in Pennyland

The Lord Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire, Countess Howe, Dame Ann Limb, High Sheriff of Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes Mayor and Mayoress Mick and Mandy Legg marked the start of the capital expansion programme at Camphill MK. Over the past year, Camphill MK Communities' grand plans to double the number of individuals with disabilities they support with a massive £15m expansion plan. The planning permission was granted just weeks before the 2020 Covid lockdown, and 1st June 2023 marked the breaking of the ground at the charity's second site in Pennyland. Attended by their patron, BBC 4's Martha Kearney, key funders, partners and residents, a celebration was held marking the start of this ambitious build with their 1st new accessible house at Pennyland. This home will offer accessible accommodation for six adults with learning disabilities and autism, with another four houses planned on that site once funds are secured. Countess Howe said, "I..

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11th Jun 2023

Top awards for Milton Keynes Scouts

Rising to the challenge… Meet the children and young people who have collected top awards for their sections from Buckinghamshire Scouts. Just under 100 Squirrels, Beavers, Cub Scouts and Scouts are pictured after receiving challenge badges in their respective age groups. And the group is looking for more volunteers to join the dozens who already help out as the youngsters learn, explore and develop their skills. “We are continuing to grow as our brilliant volunteers provide such a wide range of activities for the children,” says James Williamson, lead volunteer for Buckinghamshire Scouts. “We are looking for some people to step forward and take on different roles. These range from running a Squirrel Drey, working with teenagers, looking after the finances of a Group or looking after the Scout HQ. “Whatever time you can give, we will find you a role.” The scouts of all ages love the activities, adventure..

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06th Jun 2023

Celebrating wonderful volunteers...

To celebrate Volunteers' Week, The Parks Trust are acknowledging their volunteers' remarkable achievements and unwavering commitment. With a diverse range of roles and an ever-expanding community engagement programme, their volunteers have made a significant impact. With over 225 registered volunteers, The Parks Trust has witnessed the extraordinary power of collective effort. Each volunteer brings unique skills, knowledge, and passion to their role, enabling the charity to undertake a wide range of activities that benefit the parks and wider community. The Parks Trust’s main volunteering programme encompasses 12 distinct roles that cater to different interests and skill sets. Volunteer rangers and wardens play a vital role in ensuring the maintenance and safety of the parks, while wildlife surveyors contribute valuable data for conservation efforts. Outdoor learning and events volunteers engage with the community through educational sessions, events and recreation, while the practical conservation team undertakes crucial tasks to preserve the natural..

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15th May 2023

New Milton Keynes Kitchen Showroom opens

A brand-new showroom from German kitchen retailer, Kutchenhaus, has opened in the heart of Buckinghamshire, Milton Keynes. Located conveniently on Aylesbury Street, Fenny Stratford, the showroom is managed by joint directors, kitchen specialist, Jazeer Yaseen, and award-winning kitchen designer, Farhana Begum. The pair have combined their passion and enthusiasm for design to officially launch the showroom and Deputy Mayor and Mayoress of Milton Keynes, Mick and Mandy Legg, were recently present to officially inaugurate the start of the business with a ribbon cutting ceremony. The expansive Milton Keynes showroom is over 2,000 sq. ft, laid out over two floors, and features 13 state-of-the-art kitchen ranges. These kitchen displays showcase industry leading appliances, worksurface options and storage solutions, highlighting the latest innovations in technology from the industry. Deputy Mayor Mick Legg commented: “It is great to see new businesses open in the local area, as businesses such as this help to..

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20th Apr 2023

Sophie’s Street Feast – a street food event with a difference

Get ready for an experience like no other! Join us on Sunday 3rd September at Bradwell Abbey for a street feast hosted by Sophie etc., Toybox and MK City Discovery Centre. Sophie’s Street Feast will bring together an eclectic and exciting mix of local street food vendors, offering an array of delicious dishes inspired by cuisines from around the world, with something for everyone to enjoy. Proceeds from the event will support some of Milton Keynes’ fabulous small charities including Toybox, St Marks Meals and Girl Pack MK.    Sophie Neal, blogger for Sophie etc. says: “Having worked closely with Toybox over the past nine months, I have seen the value of the work they do for street children around the world. St Mark’s Meals and Girl Pack share their values and support the community a little closer to home, so they made a natural partnership for this event. Milton..

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17th Feb 2023

3 ‘Flipping Brilliant’ Places to Eat Pancakes in MK this Shrove Tuesday

Pancake Day. Shrove Tuesday. Mardi Gras. Whatever you decide to call it, one thing is for sure – it's a day of fun, festivities...and, most importantly, food! Here are some local gems that come HIGHLY recommended this pancake day. French Affaire, Stony Stratford One of my favourite brunch-time locations, French Affaire is a French-inspired restaurant, buried in the heart of Odell’s Yard in quaint Stony Stratford. Founded by Anca and Razvan Marcu, their intimate and elegant restaurant concept came to life from their love of French produce and their visits to family in the Campagne-Ardenne region. Although in the evenings the restaurant serves up more French fine-dining options, breakfast and lunch is dedicated to some of my favourite French food – Croques and Crepes! Their daytime menu, served until 4pm daily, consists of both sweet and savoury crepes that can all be adapted to be gluten free. There is a..

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24th Jan 2023

3 Bespoke Cocktails to Make at Home for Valentine’s Day

Why not save a little bit of money this month and celebrate Valentine’s Day at home? If it’s your first or your fifty-first Valentine’s Day with your beau, February 14th is the perfect occasion to crack out that cocktail shaker hidden at the back of your cupboard. Whether it’s an intimate 3-course dinner or more of a casual occasion, swap out your usual Mojito or Passionfruit Martini for something a little bit more special this year. Local cocktail designer and enthusiast Sunday Cocktail Club has created 3 bespoke recipes for you to try out and enjoy this year. Despite looking particularly eye-catching, these three cocktails are pretty low-maintenance. They only take a few minutes to shake up and require just a handful of ingredients. However you choose to celebrate V Day, Pulse Magazine has got you! Grab your ‘on the rocks’ glassware and then let Cupid take care of the..

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13th Jan 2023

10 Purse-Friendly January Deals from Local MK Independents

Great Gelato Last week I took a trip to one of my Stony Stratford favourites, Great Gelato. Until the end of January, they are offering a ‘BOGOF’ offer on their thick, traditional original Italian hot chocolates. We got 2 giant cups of what I can only describe as the very BEST hot chocolate I’ve ever had in the UK for £3.50 in total: an absolute steal! If you fancy something different, every week Great Gelato have a whole host of different options including: daily specials, gelato, cookies, brownies, pizza slices and more. All their products are freshly made on site, every day. T’s and C’s: Both Hot Chocolates must be the same flavour and exclude extras. This offer is not valid on Signature or Seasonal Hot Chocolates or Hot Chocolate Combos. Website: https://www.greatgelato.com/ Hustle Gin Local luxury award-winning gin company Hustle Gin is currently offering amazing New Year discounts across their..

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19th Dec 2022

Fresh Fast Food Giant itsu Celebrate their First Opening in Buckinghamshire

itsu has finally landed in Milton Keynes, having celebrated the opening of their first location in Buckinghamshire last Wednesday. The Asian-inspired, healthy fast-food restaurant brand opened inside Centre:MK in Milton Keynes at 11am on Wednesday 14th December. The healthy haven of fast, nutritious, beautiful food will offer local residents and businesses alike a delicious range of hot & cold dishes to takeaway, dine in with their friends or be delivered to local offices as a fresh meal option. “We’re looking forward to opening our first branch in Buckinghamshire while creating new career opportunities for locals on the lead-up to Christmas. Our new location nearby to John Lewis will be the perfect stop-off for those looking for a nutritious & affordable meal to keep them feeling healthy and happy throughout the festive shopping period.” - Neil Miller, Chief Customer Officer. itsu’s ‘steamed not fried’ philosophy sees their menu including hot noodle..

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14th Dec 2022

10 Alternatives to Going ‘Out Out’ this New Year

It’s certainly hard to believe, but the year will soon be coming to an end – yes, really! It seems to me like just yesterday we were saying hello to the summer sun but we’re now saying hello to 2023. Yes, there are the obvious ways to bring in the New Year – heading out to party until the early hours may be the choice for some but, if you’re anything like me, all of the celebrations surrounding Christmastime mean that NY seems like the perfect time for something a little different! Here are some unique ideas you could use to ring in the start of the next 12 months around the sun. Murder Mystery Night Whether you want to party Gatsby-style or throw a James Bond themed soirée, a classic ‘whodunnit’ murder mystery is a great alternative way to bring in the New Year with friends or family. I..

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05th Dec 2022

MK’s Cosy Winter Pub Guide – 2022

Brrrrrrrr. It's certainly starting to feel frosty out there! Here is your guide to 10 of the best local pubs that'll be sure to 'warm your cockles' this Winter! Remember: "Winter is not a season - it's a celebration." The Barge Inn and The Traveller’s Rest Part of the Vintage Inns group, The Barge at Woolstone was built in the early 19th Century to slake the thirsts of men working on The Grand Union Canal and has been a firm favourite of narrow boaters ever since. Having recently undergone a really impressive and modern refurbishment whilst keeping it’s country feel (and, importantly for the Winter, the roaring open fire) The Barge has been the pub of choice, especially for an evening drink, for my family for many years. On our recent lunchtime get together where we brought together family members from Milton Keynes, Enfield and even Ukraine, the lunchtime offerings..

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23rd Oct 2022

‘Proud to plant a tree in memory of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’...

On a beautifully sunny and bright October morning dignitaries and students gathered in Thornton College's stunning grounds to plant an Oak tree in memory of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as part of the Queen’s Green Canopy Platinum Jubilee Project. The project encourages every community across the UK to plant a tree to help the environment.  Oak trees in the UK support an estimated 2,300 species and a mature tree can absorb up to 150 kg of CO2 a year. Vice Lord-Lieutenant, Mr Alexander Boswell attended the event and planted the tree alongside Mya, a student who has grown the Oak from a local Buckinghamshire acorn in memory of her grandfather, Mr Baggs.  MK Mayor, Amanda Marlow attended the occasion alongside Sr Helen, Chair of Governors at Thornton College. Dr Louise Shaw, Head Teacher at Thornton, welcomed guests at the start of the morning and shared details of the history..

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26th Aug 2022

Charles Tyrwhitt, upmarket menswear brand to unveil first new concept store at centre:mk

British menswear brand, Charles Tyrwhitt, has opened at centre:mk, unveiling a new concept store design.  The store is located on Silbury Arcade and features Tyrwhitt’s cutting-edge store format showcasing the brand’s full collection of fine menswear. The store includes a range of new technological features, including interactive QR codes and engaging digitalised visuals to display the brand’s creative content. One-on-one styling appointments and made-to-measure custom shirt and suit services are also available, demonstrating Tyrwhitt’s ethos of ‘making it easy for men to dress well’. Since the brand’s creation in 1986, Charles Tyrwhitt has strived to supply high-quality British menswear, including shirts, suits, casualwear, shoes and accessories. The brand has also made advances with its ongoing commitment to climate positive projects and has been carbon neutral since the start of 2022. The new Charles Tyrwhitt centre:mk store will feature the brand’s renowned shirt recycling scheme, rewarding customers who bring in old..

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03rd Jun 2022

Join the local people making a difference

In 2021 Willen Hospice celebrated its 40th anniversary, and as the only adult care hospice covering Milton Keynes, the Hospice, its staff and volunteers are a beacon of light during immensely difficult times. Annually, the Hospice cares for an average of 300 people at its centre, and around 700 more are supported in their own homes. Putting that collective arm around the new town comes with a hefty price tag. It costs £9 a minute, or £13,000 a week to fund its exceptional services, and volunteers are key. “We rely heavily on the passionate support we get from so many people who freely give up their time,” said Voluntary Services Coordinator Lorraine McDonald. Annually, supporters donate more than 72,000 hours to the Hospice – whether shaking buckets at events, maintaining the gardens or helping in administration. There is simply so much to do. Volunteer Jackie works in the Kiln Farm..

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