‘We turned Milton Keynes’ run-down bus station into a cultural interchange’

By 30th January 2012Feature

Danny Quinn Venue manager of the Buszy Milton KeynesFor years Milton Keynes Bus Station was a deep down and dirty mix of tacky nightclubs, bored skaters, and grannies waiting for busses that never seemed to turn up. How it’s a hub for the MK’s culture vultures. We caught up with one of the driving forces behind the venue to find out what it has brought to the city scene.

Who are you and what do you do?
“I’m Danny Quinn, Venue & Events Manager at the Buszy in Central Milton Keynes.”

Who is behind the Buszy and why was it set up?

“In early 2009 staff from Make a Difference and a group of the young volunteers went to London to present the idea of regenerating the out-dated bus station and abandoned nightclub into a decent venue for the whole of the city. There was competition from several very large organisations, but the young people were successful. Plans were drawn up, building work began, and in July 2010 we opened our doors for the first time.”

Milton Keynes Bus Station before its refurbishment

How the Bus Station looked before

What kind of thing happens at the venue now?
“All kinds of events and activities. We have local, national and international artists, DJs, performers, dancers and other creative folk; boutique cinema screenings of international and world cinema; specialist and exclusive events such as the infamous LoftParty night; and projects for young people such as online radio, underage gig nights, and a weekly disability youth club.”

What is your favourite thing about the Buszy?
“The range of people that have been through the doors since we opened is immense. It still surprises me how diverse our community is, and running this place you see it first-hand. From Asian women’s networking, to fashion shows, skate jams, presentations and launches, each event seems to bring in a whole new crowd.”

The Buzsy

...and how it looks now

What are your plans for the future?
“Our plans are big. I don’t wanna give too much away, but new spaces will be opening in the next two months. We’ll also be increasing our cultural programme with some fantastic nights such as live burlesque acts, open mics, film screenings, storytelling and poetry. And we’ll continue our work with the community from kids’ holiday activities to the national heritage open days.”

How can people get involved?
“This venue is for everybody. Whether it’s attending an event, checking out the latest gallery exhibition or volunteering on-site. Volunteering opportunities are advertised on our website, and if anyone is looking for a central space to hire for an event we are available for private bookings.”

Do you now hate all jokes about buses and bus stops?
“Never mind jokes, it’s quite funny seeing the little old dears queuing up out the front to catch their coach trip to Skeggy!”

Find out about the latest from the Buszy at www.thebuszy.co.uk

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