Culture MK 2019

Chromocochere David Batchelor with cyclist c, Willie Robb
Chromocochere by David Batchelor with cyclist c, Willie Robb

Below are details of some of the major projects, programmes and commissions currently being developed and delivered by the Culture team. If you would like to find out more or have any questions please email us at

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Pedalling Culture – until September 2019

Promoting the wealth of culture within Milton Keynes is at the heart of Pedalling Culture. Supported by Arts Council England’s Cultural Destination Fund, Pedalling Culture is a partnership initiative uniting sustainable transport initiatives with the city’s cultural offer. From artist commissioned projects designed to ‘Reclaim the Redways’ - to the installation of e-charge points installed at cultural venues, Pedalling Culture’s mission is to ensure that citizens and visitors alike benefit from everything cultural and sustainable that MK has to offer.

Electric Car designed Tom Guilmard by lake 2 c, Willie Robb
Electric Car designed Tom Guilmard for Pedaling Culture, image credit: Willie Robb


What is 'A Festival of Creative Urban Living'?

From 26th September – 13th October 2019, central Milton Keynes will host the first ever ‘A Festival of Creative Urban Living’; bringing together artists, architects, designers, urban planners, thinkers, creatives and many others to deliver a free programme of exhibitions, events, creative workshops, performances and much more.

The programme itself will take place in a temporary campus of remarkable and playful buildings and structures and you will find more information about each element here.

Visitors will be able to enjoy and experience central MK in an entirely different way and think about what it might become and look like in the future! 

Beds United - your chance to take part in the Festival!!! 

Beds United

MK has a pretty unique design layout – with many of our residential areas hidden behind the millions of trees, which make the city such as special place to live. Often, people who visit MK ask – where are all the people?

Beds United will offer both visitors and residents the chance to find out! Raumlabor, the architects who are organising the Festival invite the citizens of Milton Keynes to host an overnight guest who may be visiting for the Festival or could already live in MK – but in a different part of the city. 

Raumlabor's idea is that they would like every residential area within the grid square and beyond to have one (or more!) hosts for the duration of the Festival. 
The Festival needs YOU!

If you would to be a host,would like more information or have any questions please email us at


Public Realm as Cultural Space – Conference – Autumn 2019

Delivered in partnership with MK Gallery as part of the Festival of Creative Urban Living, this two-day conference will explore the relationship between current public art commissioning processes; new developments and ideas within artistic practices and place-making agendas, within the context of a growing city. 


Milton Keynes City Archive

Following extensive planning and scoping work, Milton Keynes Council with Bucks County Council, MK City Discovery Centre and Living Archive are exploring the potential of creating a City Archive for Milton Keynes.  Together under ‘MK Archive’, the partners bring together the full archival story of the building of Milton Keynes through official and personal papers and photographs, film, video and oral histories that chart the social history of the pioneers, citizens and newcomers to Milton Keynes that have made it their home.  For more information see the Collections page.


Strategic medium- to long-term initiatives:

Equality and Diversity Action Plan

Milton Keynes is one of the most diverse cities in the UK, with over 40% of our school children speaking English as a second language. We know that this rich diversity is not reflected in our cultural offer or our audiences. Following a robust and in-depth period of research, which will identify gaps in provision and challenges to participation, findings will then inform the delivery of evidence based interventions which will address these challenges.

IF 2012. Raghu Dixit audiences in Spiegeltent
IF 2012, Raghu Dixit audiences in Spiegeltent c, Shaun Armstrong

Audience Participation

Following on from a snap-shot audience participation survey in 2018; the Culture team will commission a far-reaching, in-depth analysis of cultural audience participation across the city. This will combine with an in-depth survey of MK’s visitor economy. This data will provide us with the tools to target and reach communities who are currently not engaged.

Floating Cinema at Great Linford
Floating Cinema at Great Linford c, Willie Robb

Cultural Infrastructure Plan

As the city grows, our cultural infrastructure will need to grow. In order to map out current provision and any gaps, the Culture team will commission an infrastructure plan, setting out a clear and comprehensive strategy for cultural infrastructure growth and investment over a 10 year period.

Last Updated: 25 June 2019