Latest Local News from in and around Milton Keynes

With so many news stories from local businesses, charity groups, clubs, our local MP’s and societies it is hard to keep up with all the happenings.

Here is a collection of the stories we have received and were unable to print in yourlocalflyer

Bike Show returns to Milton Keynes

The MK Bike Show returns to Milton Keynes this year for a celebration of all things motorcycling. With exhibitors including local bike dealers, training organisations, bike clubs and bike tour organisers, whatever your interest in bikes there’s something for everyone.

And best of all, the event, which takes place 10am – 4pm on Sunday 8th July at the MK Dons Stadium, is free to enter with free parking!

The event is run by Milton Keynes Advanced Motorists (MKAM) bike section in conjunction with Milton Keynes Council and Bucks Fire Services.  The show aims to represent the interests of the motorcycling community of Milton Keynes and the surrounding area while bringing all those involved together for a day of talking, sharing and fun. “Our first event two years ago was so successful that we knew we had to do it again,” said Ian Souter, MKAM Chair.  “This year is even bigger and better than before with more exhibitors, clubs and show bikes.”

The Inner Concourse, sponsored by, will house the specialist trades, clubs and the show bikes.  The classic bike show will cover the last 50 years of motorcycling, coincidentally, the same age as Milton Keynes.  All proceeds from the show will be donated to the Blood Bikes charity SERV.

MK Bike Show chairman, Dave Macey said, “We’re delighted to be able to hold the event at StadiumMK, the home of the MK Dons without whose support we could not have staged this event.”  In line with the club ethos this will be a family event so bring everyone down to say hello.  The 2016 show attracted an estimated 5,000 people and this year, with an additional indoor show area, we will be able to cater for even more.

Up to date information will be available on the website and social media.



Twitter: @MKBikeShow


The Artisan Market is back by popular demand at intu Milton Keynes

intu Milton Keynes is delighted to announce the return of the popular Artisan Market, a showcase of over 30 independent businesses.

The market, which will take place on Saturday 9 June will be situated outside Gap and Hollister and, for the first time, offer interactive workshops for shoppers to get involved and really see how to create such beautiful homemade products*.

Also, this market will see new businesses taking part, including The Owls Nest Design Studio, specialising in metal art, jewellery and sculptures, Zellie London, selling bags and accessories for little adventures and Jenn Roffe who creates beautiful hand-drawn inspirational prints and cards for friends. Plus some favourites from last time will be back including Himalayan 4 U, who sell fair trade Himalayan salt products and lamps, Tabitha May, a digital print designer who is inspired by the railway posters of the 1930’s and Baby Dee & Me who specialise in slogan tees and monochrome baby clothes inspired by music.

Kirsty McGiff, marketing manager at intu Milton Keynes said, “We are thrilled to host another market with the Etsy MK team and look forward to welcoming lots of lovely sellers back to the centre. The workshops which some of the sellers are planning to run will be a brilliant addition to the market and will definitely put a smile on everyone’s face. It is also a great way for shoppers to get to know the sellers from behind the scenes!”

Applications for the June market are now closed however the Etsy MK team are accepting applications for the 29 September market and the Christmas Etsy Made Local Market which is now confirmed for Saturday 1 December.

To register your interest for the next two markets, please email Sellers taking part in the Christmas market on the 1 December must be Etsy sellers. Sellers do not have to be an Etsy seller to take part in the September market, but sellers do have to be independent and sell locally designed, handmade, upcycled or vintage items. The centre cannot, unfortunately, accept independent sellers who sell mass-produced items, items bought from trade shows or imported goods to resell.


A full list of traders will be revealed closer to the time on the intu Milton Keynes website here.


*Subject to change.


This May, MK Gallery has launched its brand new Art and Us programme of family art activities for children aged 5 and over with profound learning and/or physical disabilities.
The first event took place on Sunday 6 May, and continues with weekly two hour sessions that enable families to work directly with an artist to explore their creative interests. Families will be able to enjoy spending time together in a creative, accessible and fun environment that caters to everyone’s needs.
The programme, which extends MK Gallery’s role in improving access to culture, is supported by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and MK Community Foundation and has been developed in recognition of the unique requirements of families with a child or children with complex needs.
The sessions are facilitated by a number of MK Gallery Associate Artists, including:
Alice Boland-Rhodes
Sophie Bennett
Carlos Cortes
India Harvey
Willow Mitchell
Nicole Morris
Jane Glynn
Together they offer a varied and strong track record working with children with physical and learning disabilities and family groups.
Bethany Mitchell, Curator of Inclusion at MK Gallery, explains: “Art and Us offers an incredibly exciting creative programme for families with children with complex needs. These weekly Sunday sessions create valuable opportunities for family groups to work together, alongside an artist, and to expand upon their interests through open ended, responsive activity. Both myself and our team of Art and Us Associate Artists are thrilled to meet more of our local families and to explore, play and learn alongside each other in a safe and stimulating environment which will be shaped by us all.”
MK Gallery is currently undergoing a major expansion, with the main gallery building due to reopen in early 2019. The new building will have impressive access facilities with routes of a generous width, accessible signage, a hearing loop, portable seating and a Changing Places toilet – a facility for those whose needs mean they are unable to use a standard accessible toilet.
Please email Bethany Mitchell for further information:
For further information about MK Gallery visit, or find us on Facebook and Twitter @MK_Gallery.

Milton Keynes to launch Sharing Culture initiative

Destination Milton Keynes is working in partnership with Milton Keynes Council to deliver a year of cultural tourism initiatives, as a part of the European Year of Cultural Heritage.  The initiatives, which are promoted under the Sharing Culture thread of the EYCH work, will be launched at an exclusive event taking place in Olney on Monday 21 May from 1-3pm.

Graham Bell, chair of European Year of Cultural Heritage, will speak at the event and explain how the initiative is important to the UK as well as to Milton Keynes in particular.  Also presenting are Steven Gordon-Wilson (DMK) and Shane Downer (MK Council).

Following the presentations and lunch at The Cherry Tree in Olney, guests will be invited to visit the world-renowned Cowper and Newton Museum – home of William Cowper and John Newton, writers of The Olney Hymns, which include Amazing Grace.  Guests are invited to tour the museum and enjoy Pimms and strawberries on the lawn.

Steven Gordon-Wilson, CEO of Destination Milton Keynes said, “Milton Keynes’ cultural heritage is so important to the story of the city and to our visitor economy.  People come from far and wide to visit our wide range of cultural assets – this event will kick start some really strong initiatives which will grow the sector even further.”

Shane Downer, Heritage Officer at Milton Keynes Council added: “It’s really significant that we’re hosting this event in partnership with Cowper and Newton Museum – the venue is a jewel in our cultural crown and a real unsung hero of the MK story.  We’re delighted to be giving it a platform with this campaign.”

To find out more visit

Robots Leading the Way in MK

Starship Technologies were delighted to welcome Mark Lancaster MP to their operational hub in Monkston Park last week.

The operation is the world’s leading robot home delivery service and is set right in the heart of Mark’s constituency of Milton Keynes North. Of the dozen making their way around the city, recent statistics show that MK has broken a number of world records for the greatest number of orders ever documented in a single day.

Feedback has been extremely positive from local residents, many of whom quickly embraced the automated home delivery service as an integral part of their daily shopping activity. The robot is revolutionary because it delivers at very low cost, with zero emissions and at almost no time expense to the customer. It is able to deliver to those who are short of time and those who are less mobile, giving a degree of independence and convenience which makes a great difference to busy and mobility impaired citizens.

Starship is so encouraged by the local response that it intends to continue the trial for the foreseeable future, working closely with Milton Keynes Council to ensure the findings are incorporated in protocols defining how the device and others like it, should are operated.

After the demonstration, Mark commented “You can’t have failed to have noticed the little white robots quietly making their way around MK. I’m delighted that the company has recognised that we are a “can do” city and was right to invest its time, money and delivery fleet in MK. I’m looking forward to seeing the project enhance deliveries for local businesses.”

Celestra’s Muddy Stars support Neonatal Unit at Milton Keynes University Hospital

A LOCAL company from Milton Keynes has partnered with Milton Keynes Hospital Charity to create booklets for parents who have babies born too early, too small or very ill.

Last year IT specialists Celestra took part in the Nuclear Races – one of the UK’s toughest obstacle courses – in aid of Milton Keynes Hospital Charity’s neonatal unit fund.

This is the third time a group of 30 guys and girls called the ‘Muddystars’ have entered the races for the neonatal unit at Milton Keynes University Hospital. Thanks to their hard work and determination they raised an amazing £3,536.

This week the charity revealed how the donation has been spent – on two products that will enhance the experience families and patients receive on the neonatal unit.

All new parents on the neonatal unit will be given an early babies parent handbook, which acts a practical guide for parents with premature babies – and is particularly useful if a parent finds themselves in the unit unexpectedly.

The hospital has also been able to produce bespoke baby diaries, which allow parents to document their journey on the neonatal unit – including key milestones such as ‘the first time you held me’ and ‘the first time I came out of the incubator’. The diary also features a Graduation Certificate!

Staff on the unit, as well as parents, have been involved in the production of this diary from start to finish. Senior sister Karen Rice said: ‘The diaries will provide memories for loved ones for years to come and something for families to treasure. As donations to our neonatal unit are about making a direct difference to the hospital’s tiniest patients and their loved ones, we are most thankful for Celestra’s amazing contribution and fundraising efforts.’

Celestra were able to see the finished product last week and were delighted with the end result. Celestra Marketing manager Glen Irving said: ‘It’s great to be involved with the neonatal unit, which has supported members of our team here at Celestra in the past. We understand the vital work that this unit does first hand in supporting families and it’s a pleasure to help where we can.’

Chase from PAW Patrol to visit Leighton Buzzard Railway

Following on from last year’s visit of Paddington, the Leighton Buzzard Railway is delighted to announce to visit of Chase from PAW Patrol to the fare end of our line at Stonehenge Works on Sunday 8 July.

We’ll be running non-stop trains – not stopping at level crossings as usual – which will be double the normal length at seven coaches. This is an incredibly rare event and offers a great opportunity for photographers, as well as families.

There will be five departures during the day – at 1000, 1140, 1320, 1500 and 1640. Tickets are selling fast, with some trains already more than two-thirds full.

The return trip will take 80 minutes, including 40 minutes at Stonehenge Works where, as well as the meeting Chase, customers can visit the Stonehenge Trail offering the chance to view static engines and wagons, including a sand train as it would have run on the railway from the 1920s to 1970s. We have a steam loco called ‘Penlee’ where children can climb in the cab and pretend to be the engine driver. There is also a bomb train from an RAF ammunition depot, and a logging train, as well as displays about sand quarrying and military railways.

The popular craft shop will be open, selling locally made items, as well as hot and cold drinks and confectionery. We will also have a guided Engine Shed Show tour at Page’s Park which will include most of our steam locomotives as well as the photographic display of the line and its construction. The Buzzrail café will be open with a full menu from 10.00.

Chairman Terry Bendall said: ‘The visit of Paddington last year was one of our most popular events of recent years with record passenger numbers, and we look forward to welcoming Chase to England’s Friendly Little Line.’

Fee-free online booking is available at, and we advise booking in advance to reserve your place, as we expect there to be very limited ticket availability on the day.

Courage is the key to Success

Four years ago Nathalie Hogg, a seventeen year old sixth form student from Buckinghamshire had a school visit from Action4Youth’s National Citizen Service (NCS), a visit that she says changed the direction and future prospects of her life.

Action4Youth has played a huge part in my life over the past four years. When I was seventeen years old, the National Citizen Service (NCS) team visited my school to deliver a presentation about the programme. I had never been a particularly loud and confident young person and a personal development programme like the NCS looked to be something that would do me a world of good.

During the summer, I met tons of great new people, including one of my (now) best friends, and learnt a lot about myself as a person. I remember on our first week away, gripping my harness until my knuckles turned white and screaming so loud on a giant swing that I lost my voice! My confidence shot through the roof after my NCS summer. I found myself developing a passion for philanthropy and an eagerness to work with young people. The experience was transformational in every sense of the word; I suddenly became a much more outgoing person.

Since graduating the programme in 2014, I have volunteered and worked as both an assistant and team leader in the summer, working to ensure that today’s young people have an incredible experience, just like I did. Now, four years on, I find myself working full time as part of that same NCS team. It is very much a ‘full circle’ experience for me and it gives me a great sense of pride and achievement to be able to work for the charity that provided me with the life-changing opportunity that is NCS. I do not use the phrase ‘life-changing’ lightly; it is astounding how much impact three weeks in the summer holidays with great people, new experiences and a little courage can have on a person.

Nathalie is now a Project Worker at Action4Youth, imparting her knowledge and experience to the next generation of young people who are keen to learn new skills and grow in confidence, just as she did.

For further information and to sign-up to take part in an Action4Youth NCS course visit


Barratt Homes Northampton recently welcomed Milton Keynes North MP Mark Lancaster to its Brooklands development in Milton Keynes for a hard hat tour.

The leading homebuilder invited constituency MP Mr Lancaster to visit Barratt Homes’ Brooklands development on Fen Street and go behind the scenes to look at the ongoing construction work taking place.

Brooklands has been well-received by buyers since it initially launched in 2014, and has since helped more than 1,000 families find their dream home.

During his visit Mr Lancaster spent time meeting the team who work at Brooklands and discussing the new homes with Managing Director of Barratt Northampton Andrew Swindell.

Mark Lancaster commented: “In addition to the impressive and fast-paced building programme, I’ve since learnt that 49% of purchases on the development have been supported by the government-backed Help to Buy scheme.”

The range of homes available at the development includes a selection of one, two, three, four and five bedroom properties, with modern homes to suit a variety of budgets and lifestyles.

Andrew Swindell, Managing Director at Barratt Homes Northampton, said: “We were delighted to welcome Mark Lancaster onto the site and discuss our fantastic Brooklands development. It was great to show him the plan for the site and give him an opportunity to view the ongoing works at the development.”

Brooklands offers a mixture of classic and contemporary homes, close to the hustle and bustle of Milton Keynes but with the peace and quiet of suburban living.

This is an ideal location for commuters working in and around Milton Keynes, as well as in London. There’s a convenient coach station and a train station a short drive away, providing fast routes to a number of locations, including central London in just 32 minutes and Birmingham New Street in 55 minutes.

Away from work, Brooklands is an excellent place to spend your free time; there’s no shortage of green open spaces, trees and tasteful art structures to explore. Plus nearby, residents can pass hours in MK shopping centre with its selection of shops and eateries.

To find out more about homes at Brooklands visit or call the sales team on 0844 811 3999.


Partnership working the way forward for two MK organisations

Two important organisations with roles in strengthening the city centre vitality both in terms of visitor experience and increasing footfall, and business engagement focussing on employee satisfaction, the overall impression of city centre through clean up projects, transport services and creating a robust and safer environment for all, have come together to form an influential partnership.

Destination Milton Keynes, which has a remit to manage the essential visitor economy across the city and Amazing CMK BID (Business Improvement District), which manages ambitious plans to tackle a number of significant city centre issues, will now work together on key projects to create greater opportunities for businesses and venue operators to promote to employees and visitors to CMK.

The partnership will see Amazing CMK take a place on the Destination MK Board to allow more input into future plans for promoting Central Milton Keynes and will see a much closer working relationship between the two organisations developing strategy, driving through dedicated projects such as Park ‘n’ Ride and lobbying other MK stakeholders.

Melanie Beck, Chief Executive of Amazing CMK commented, “We are delighted to have the opportunity to work in partnership with Destination MK. Being aligned with the keepers of the Destination Management Plan will assist in making CMK attractive to both business and visitors.”

CEO of Destination Milton Keynes, Steven Gordon-Wilson said, “ This is a really exciting step in the development of Milton Keynes as a Visitor Destination. DMK and Amazing CMK have always had a great working relationship, both focused on the success of the city, and this partnership will give us the opportunity to work even closer together on specific projects benefitting those that love to live, work and play in MK.”

For more information on the services, both organisations provide visit or