Here's how you can help Milton Keynes finally become a city
Many of us call it a city already - but only the Queen can make it official
Residents are this week invited to get involved in helping Milton Keynes finally gain official city status.
Though the decision will not be made until next year, there is less than two months left before the deadline to submit the bid expires.
During that time. MK have to come up with a design for its own flag, as well as gathering 50 perfect photos of local areas.
Many people already refer to MK already as a city, particularly when talking about the 'city centre'. However, we are technically just a town.
The council has tried three times over the past 19 years to bid for coveted city status, which can only be granted by the Queen. But each time it has lost out to other large towns.
Next year, the Queen will have reigned for 70 years and several cities will be established as part of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.
MK Council is working with partners and organisations on a submission – to be made by December 8 – telling stories of unique local people and places and setting out why Milton Keynes is such a special candidate for city status.
The bid is allowed to include 50 photographs, which must all show places in Milton Keynes and not people.
Residents are today invited to start snapping their most-loved locations and upload them to www.destinationmiltonkeynes.co.uk/city-bid-competition before November 14.
The council says it hopes to include as many photos taken by local citizens as possible.
People are also invited to take part in a competition to design Mk's very own flag. The council is asking schools to take part in this and one winning design will become part of the bid and be made into a flag to fly on and beyond bid submission day.
The deadline for the flag competition is also November 14. Schools have already been sent information on how pupils can enter, but you find out more at www.destinationmiltonkeynes.co.uk/news/design-a-flag-for-milton-keynes.
Another way to get involved is to share something special about Milton Keynes. The council will be posting facts and photos using the hashtag #takeprideinmk on Facebook at @MKCouncil1 and on Twitter at @MKCouncil.
You can back the bid by passing on your favourites or by posting personal photos and stories, says the council.
Finally, you can plant a tree for the Jubilee. The Queen’s Green Canopy is a tree planting initiative where everyone is invited to take part.. MK Council will be planting 400 trees in public spaces as part of the project.
If you’d like to plant a tree in your garden, there’s useful advice on The Queen’s Green Canopy website.
Share something special about Milton Keynes. The Council will be posting facts and photos using the hashtag #takeprideinmk on Facebook at @MKCouncil1 and on Twitter at @MKCouncil. Back the bid by passing on favourites or by posting personal photos and stories.
MK Council leader Cllr Pete Marland said: “We’re asking local people to Take Pride in MK and back the bid, taking the moment to come together and celebrate. It’s important we shout about why Milton Keynes is such a special place while the decision is being made.
“We’ll be using the bid to showcase our heritage and identity, alongside our strong communities. We believe every country in the Commonwealth is represented among our citizens, from Australia to Zambia. Becoming a city will endorse our journey so far and bring further opportunities to come together.”
A cross-party decision for Milton Keynes to make a formal bid for city status was made at a meeting of the council in July.
The winning cities are expected to be announced on the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee extended bank holiday weekend, June 2 to June 5 2022.