All hail the bard - Buckingham appoints town’s first ever bard

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Bard, Dean Jones.
The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Bard, Dean Jones.

The first Bard of Buckingham was appointed on Tuesday October 1, as former town clerk Dean Jones was awarded the ceremonial role following a bardic trial at the Woolpack pub.

Dean, who is now the university’s partnerships and outreach manager, was voted into the post following a closely-fought contest.

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Mark Niel, competitor.

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Mark Niel, competitor.

Six participants took part in the bardic trial in total, with each performing a piece on the theme of Buckingham and then a theme of their choice.

After the two performances by each potential bard, the audience voted by ballot resulting in a tie between Dean and University of Buckingham lecturer Cherry Coombe.

After Dean and Cherry presented a further performance each, there was another vote, with Dean finally declared the winner.

Dean said: “I’m both surprised and delighted to take on the role of First ‘Bard of Buckingham’.

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Graham Darby, competitor.

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Graham Darby, competitor.

“I would like to use this as an opportunity to bring the community together and give people in the town a voice.

“This should be an opportunity to celebrate everything that makes Buckingham special and have a bit of fun along the way.

“I’m looking forward to embracing the role in a collaborative way with the deputy bard, Cherry Coombe, as well as anyone in the town who has an interest in poetry, public speaking and spoken word who wants to get involved or take part along the way.”

A bardic council will now be formed made up of poets, storytellers and those who wish to support the bard in their endeavours.

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Sam Upton, competitor.

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Sam Upton, competitor.

The bardic council will meet for the first time on Tuesday, October 8 in the town council chamber at 7pm, with all welcome to attend.

Dean will hold the role of bard for a year and will be invited to present his work at town events, including the Christmas lights switch-on and fringe festival.

Once Dean was appointed Bard of Buckingham he had to read the bardic oath which goes as follows:

Words gather and now my bardic watch begins.

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Ashley Foster 'Ukesnaile', competitor.

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Ashley Foster 'Ukesnaile', competitor.

It shall not end for two years and a day.

I shall herald the town, raise for bardic causes, and keep it family friendly.

I shall wear no crown, and win no glory.

I shall live and not languish at my post.

I am the word in the silence.

I am the mouth of the masses.

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Mitchell Taylor, The 9th Bard of Stony Stratford.

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Mitchell Taylor, The 9th Bard of Stony Stratford.

I am the voice that celebrates the Buckingham.

I pledge my words and honour to this bardic year, for this night and all the nights come.”

Dean’s winning poem Buckingham 10k goes as follows:

‘This is my attempt at a Buckingham 10k (marathon of a) poem

Once upon a time there was a child who liked to run

They’d run for hours and hours and hours and do it just for fun

They’d run to school each morning, they’d run through break and brunch

They’d run home to their parents’ house, they’d run to get their lunch

They’d run when they were happy, they’d run when they were sad

They’d even run on Christmas Day, it drove their parents mad

Their running got much better, they started winning races

Everybody cheered them on, they put smiles on people’s faces

They’d run the weekly 5k race called Buckingham park run’,

They’d run with lots of other folk, they’d do it just for fun

They even had a finish line and they’d take it everywhere

They’d run the annual ‘10k Race’ from here to somewhere over there

They’d run up old dark alley, past the Latin and secondary school

They’d run past cheering school mates who thought running fast was cool

They’d pass Hunter Street to Tingewick Road past the University

They’d run past Louis’ on Nelson Street, past the bull ring lined with trees

They’d run along the cycle path, past the printers BCQ, They’d run to Lace Hill Playing fields, if you haven’t been their do!

They’d run to Binns and the Mitre Pub, they’d run to the X5 bus

They won the London Marathon but didn’t want much fuss

They’d run through Cornwall’s Meadow, past Black Pepper and Waitrose

They’d run past all the High Street shops where everybody goes

They’d run to Buckingham Library and the beautiful Old Gaol

They’d run past five barbers, eight coffee shops, a tattoo parlour, a yoga centre, a fitness studio, the post office, M&Co, W H Smiths, Leaders Hardware, Antique Shic, Barclays Bank, Dominos, Prego, Prezzo, the dry cleaners, the offie, Oxfam, Scope, The Kings Head for a gin and the White Hart for an ale...oh and the Woolpack!

They’d run to the concrete skate park, past the town hall and three cups

They’d run up to Tesco’s Roundabout the one developers messed up

They’d run all along Badgers Way, along the beautiful canal

They’d sometimes feel quite lonely so found company with pals

Their running days turned into weeks and weeks turned into months

The years raced on and still they ran and they always came up trumps

They ran to save a life one day, they ran the railway walk

They ran on along Stowe Avenue where people go to talk

They ran into the local church, to start their married life

They ran to the maternity ward in Milton Keynes (university) hospital to speak to a midwife

They’d run around Bourton Park and up and down Page Hill

They couldn’t stop the running all that running made them ill

They ran into Swan Surgery to hear what doctor might prescribe

And when the nurse in there took their pulse she couldn’t quite describe...

‘The condition that you have’ said Doc, ‘is something very rare’

‘You have a virus called runningitus so I’m prescribing you a chair’

They’d run to the moon and back you know, they’d do anything now to stop

And one day they did you know, when they’d finally reached the top

They ran to the Buckingham Civic Day to collect their running medal

They met the mayor with silver hair, they were awarded a bike to pedal

The Advertiser ran a story, it made Buckingham What Matters

The conversation was positive, leaving Brexit spats in tatters

They had all the fame and glory, they’d seen everything they could

They’d looked back on their running days knowing their yesterdays were good

One day they ran right out of breath, they couldn’t run much more

They could barely get up and out of bed, their joints were old and sore

They reached a point where age had won, their hair had thinned and greyed

They ran out of time in this life, their time had run away

We ran to Buckingham cemetery to say our last farewells

The tears ran down a thousand cheeks

And to the ground they fell.

Now they run somewhere else, wherever somewhere is

If anyone talks about them, they speak through running tears

Once upon a time there was

a child who liked to run

They’d run for hours and hours and hours and do it just for fun’

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Cherry Coombe, Deputy Bard, Dean Jones, Bard and Mayor, Cllr.Mark Cole.

The election of The Bard Of Buckingham. Cherry Coombe, Deputy Bard, Dean Jones, Bard and Mayor, Cllr.Mark Cole.