Introduction to Sustainable Beekeeping/Introductory Plus

Would you like to know how to keep bees sustainably, on a small scale? Have you always wondered what goes on inside a hive? Perhaps you’re worried about how our bees are declining and want to know how to help them. Many people would like a colony of honeybees in their garden, and on this course I will show you how a hive works, and how to keep your bees happy and healthy with minimal intervention. This course is suitable for complete novices with no previous experience, or those who have decided to pursue a less invasive way of beekeeping compared to more traditional methods.

As we discuss the care and management of the honeybee colony rather than purely beekeeping techniques, the information can be utilised for any hive type in any situation, anywhere in the world. It is also suitable for those requiring more information than they might get from books or the internet: authors, food stylists, natural health practitioners, nutritionists, and PhD students are among those who have attended the courses to gain a greater understanding of these fascinating insects and the products we can use from the hive.

Topics covered include:

  • How the bee colony works
  • Different types of hive
  • Overview of sustainable management
  • Swarming
  • Equipment needed
  • Costs involved
  • Harvesting honey and beeswax sustainably
  • Plants for your bees

There will also be a chance to ask questions and discuss how we can all help our pollinators, irrespective of whether we want to keep bees or not. Refreshments and an information handout are provided.

Please note that we don’t open up a hive on this occasion (you will learn why on the course!) so there is no need for equipment.

£40 per person for the 2 hour session, or £75 for two booked at the same time. Gift vouchers area available if you’d like to give this course to someone as a present. 25% discount for 14-21 year olds, and university students.

***new*** introductory plus course

This is an add-on to the above course, for those people who are wanting to go ahead and keep bees. We will have a short break and then carry on to look at the basics in more details:

  • Getting started
  • How to build frames
  • Putting your hive together
  • Where to site your hive
  • Where/how to source your first colony

The cost for this is an additional £20 per person for the 1.5 hour session, or £25 for two booking at the same time (so a total cost of £60, or £100 for two), to include a Sustainable Beekeeping poster as a handy reminder of the information. Discounts as above apply. We will visit the apiary, and wear stout boots or wellingtons. If the weather is awful, I do have back up plans in place.

2020 dates:

  • 18th January [FULLY BOOKED]
  • 25th January
  • 8th February [FULLY BOOKED]
  • 29th February [FULLY BOOKED]
  • 14th March [FULLY BOOKED]
  • 4th April [FULLY BOOKED]
  • 25th April
  • 9th May
  • 6th June
  • 11th July
  • 22nd August
  • 19th September
  • 17th October
  • 14th November

Please email for more details, or to book.

This course was perfect. Jennifer has an art to imparting her passionate knowledge of bee keeping in such a way that beginners feel inspired and equipped to start immediately. Jennifer is clearly incredibly knowledgeable about the subject and her sustainable approach should be admired. She teaches in such a way that you leave the course with confidence. The added extra is that you get to taste the product of her incredible baking skills. A wonderfully relaxed but truly informative course. I will certainly be attending an intermediate course in the near future 🐝 “

Lee Tomlinson February 2019

A very informative day – I learnt more about bee keeping in 2 hours with Jennifer than from all the literature that I had been reading. Jennifer is very knowledgeable and explains the subject in a clear and understandable manner at a pace that everyone could keep up with. Well worth doing if you are thinking of keeping bees in a sustainable way.

Frank Donnachie April 2019