HARD-pressed families have a reason to celebrate in 2012 – there are more than 300 free events planned in Aylesbury town centre this year.
Highlights include a Roman fun day in June, Aylesbury Music Festival in July, free activities for youngsters dressed as superheroes in August, animal petting, magic shows and activities for London 2012 and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
This week the latest free events guide was released. All of the activities are aimed at encouraging more people into the town, which is likely to result in increased footfall in the shops.
The guides are produced by the Aylesbury Town Centre partnership which is made up of shops, restaurants, councils and Chiltern Railway.
Janice Halsey, manager of Aylesbury tourist information centre, said: “This is a wonderful marketing tool for Aylesbury. There are so many things to do. The guide is something the tourist information centre hands out. By looking in the guide and seeing all the different events they will probably come back to the town.”
Diana Fawcett, town centre manager, said: “There is such a huge array of businesses in the town centre and it’s important that we encourage people into the town. There is a huge range of activities, something for children in the libraries for the bookworms and at the museum for budding historians. There are activities for children on Thursdays during the school holidays in the town centre, the popular robot wars event and live music throughout the summer, on Sundays.”
David Erskine, of the Bucks County Museum in Aylesbury, added: “We have a special jubilee exhibition about the two jubilee Queens, Queen Victoria and our present monarch Queen Elizabeth. On show we will have photos and objects from their visits to Buckinghamshire.”
Alan Norchi, events officer at Aylesbury Town Council, said: “Some of the events are well known and popular, especially Aylesbury-On-Sea which attracts over 1,000 people. It has great novelty value and children love it. We don’t charge for any of them and they bring people into the town to do something different. It complements the shopping.”
Neighbourhood inspector for Aylesbury town centre Kelly Glister said: “It is great to see the shops and community working together for children to have fun.”
>The free events guide is available from council information stands. Highlights include:
Princesses and Knights, June 7: Jubilee-themed fun making tiaras or shields and playing on bouncy castles with turrets.
Roald Dahl Festival, July 7: Also Roald Dahl games and family races in Vale Park.
Summer Speedway, August 23: Play with an eight-lane giant Scalextric.
Paralympic Flame Festival, August 28: Town centre events to welcome the flame.
Parklife, September 1: Including Vale Park proms.