A place for Celebration, Commemoration and Contemplation

The Milton Keynes Rose is a new and spectacular public place in Central Milton Keynes, which is available to everyone for celebration, commemoration and contemplation.

Designed by internationally renowned artist Gordon Young, The Milton Keynes Rose is a vast and impressive open-air circle with markings based on the mathematical beauty of a flower. 106 granite pillars of varying heights emerge from the surface, many of which are inscribed with dates of events that have local, national or international significance.

The Milton Keynes Rose provides a place where citizens and visitors can gather to mark national, local or personal occasions, be they historical, in joy or in remembrance. It is a place where hundreds can gather to mark Armistice Day or one person can remember another in a personal moment. It is not a sombre place, but a place of coming together and celebration.

HRH Prince William unveils our new Founders Pillar

“To an Arts person like me, early Milton Keynes seemed an enticingly blank playlist. Everything needed doing, and if the city didn’t offer what you wanted you felt it was okay to just pitch up and make it happen. Others were doing the same so it wasn’t long before we were all collaborating, promoting and supporting each other’s activities, building momentum and ambition for anything creative, bold, diverse, engaging and fun. At the time, we didn’t realise that our energy and hunger would be a deal maker when Arts funders were deciding if they should invest in our city, but so it later proved.” Jacky Scott, Arts & Culture Founder

The Founders Pillar acknowledges the diverse range of people who contributed to the built, social, commercial & cultural development of the New Town of Milton Keynes, our city. We are seeking those who contributed between 1967 – 1992 for our Founders Roll. It was the greatest honour that HRH The Duke of Cambridge recently unveiled the newly engraved Pillar at The Milton Keynes Rose, in celebration of The Founders. We hope that people will be happy to tell us about their memories and roles, realising the high regards their efforts and vision are held in, please get in touch with John Moffoot (moffoot285@btinternet.com)

Read about the Founders

Watch the pillar being engraved

The Milton Keynes Rose is used throughout the year for events and gatherings. Everyone is welcome to come along. You can also visit at any time simply to enjoy the space.

Previous event : Tea Party for First Tea Bag Day

Friday 5th July

The first tea bag produced in Britain from Tetley’s factory in Osborne Street, Bletchley.  The tea bag was brought to Britain by Tetley, who produced them in the UK for the first time in 1953 in Bletchley. By 1968, Tetley tea bag sales had soared to 5,000 tonnes a year.

Annual Event: Disability Awareness Day

12th July at 12 noon

A celebration – speeches, dancing and art raised awareness of what people with disabilities can achieve. The day aims to reduce the stigma surrounding physical disability, learning disability and ill mental health. Read the 2017 article in the MK Citizen

Past Event: Commonwealth Picnic 

21st April 2018

Over 100 people celebrated being part of the Commonwealth by sharing food, friendship and flags on HM The Queen’s Birthday, joining in with Commonwealth celebrations that took place right across the globe.

Past Event: International Women’s Day

8th March every year

This year, guests gathered at the MK Theatre and then the Milton Keynes Rose to attach their #PressForProgress pledges to the International Women’s Day pillar. Nikki Ross, assistant chief constable of Thames Valley Police, and Debbie Brock, Chair of the Cenotaph Trust (Milton Keynes Rose) gave inspiring speeches and two students from MK Academy read extracts from ‘Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls’ by Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo. Read more in the MKCitizen online

Past Event: Armistice Day

11th Nov 2017
Citizens of Milton Keynes, including many young people formed an impressive procession down to the Milton Keynes Rose from MK Theatre. Francesca Skelton, Chair of MK Arts and Heritage Alliance said, “A ceremony that embraces all and allows us to gather together in remembrance, across all faiths and non, in the shared value of the respect for the courage and suffering for those who died and the loss to their families and the country.”
11th Nov 2017

Past Event: HRH Prince William unveils the Founders’ Pillar

Tues 26th Sept 2017
HRH Prince William (The Duke of Cambridge) enjoyed a lively ‘animated tour’ of the Milton Keynes Rose led by Debbie Brock, Chair of the Cenotaph Trust. He made a speech before unveiling our new pillar celebrating Milton Keynes’ Founders. See pictures of the visit on Getty images. Read about the visit on BBC news.

Past Event: Vigil for Manchester Bombing

23rd May 2017

Milton Keynes’ new Mayor, Cllr David Hopkins, held a short public vigil in honour of those who lost their lives at Manchester Arena. Twenty-two people, including children, died and 59 others were injured after an explosion at an Ariana Grande pop concert at Manchester Arena in a suspected terror attack.

Past Event: International Dance Day

29th April 2015

Dancers from MOTUS Dance Group animated The Milton Keynes Rose in a stunning performance