What's on

Beyond Swarm Control

Start date

Ruth Horner first started keeping bees at her school when she was aged 9 - Ian Horner started a little later, but together they have kept bees for over 35 years in Dorset and in Northumberland. Together, they have kept an average of around 12 colonies during this period.

This meeting is being held at the Newcourt Community Centre, Blakeslee Drive, The Rydons, Exeter EX2 7AY.

Free parking.

About the speakers

We are concerned that, despite an influx of new beekeepers in recent years, the average age of beekeepers remains stubbornly high and we have been looking at ways of developing future beekeepers amongst younger people.

Over the last couple of years we have been increasingly involved in the International Meeting of Young Beekeepers programme which England has competed in each year since 2011. This has involved team selection and publicity about the event and, we have accompanied the team members and team manger to the event in Slovakia in 2015 and in Prague in 2016. The main reason for this was to assess the level of input and commitment necessary to host the event in England in 2017. With support from the BBKA Executive, a proposal was put to association delegates at the Annual Delegate Meeting in January 2016 to host the event in England in 2017. Delegates demonstrated their support for the project and voted heavily in favour. Delegates also agreed that members associations would make a contribution to the costs of the event based on membership numbers. With this support behind us we feel confident that we will be able to raise sufficient sponsorship to cover the costs of the event.

Natural Beekeeping and how to make a Tree Trunk Hive

Start date

Jonathan Powell from the National Beekeepng Trust will be speaking about wild unmanaged colonies, tree beekeeping and treatment-free Natural Beekeeping in the UK. Traditional European tree hives are particularly inspiring in our challenging contemporary context, and Jonathan believes that we have much to learn from them and how wild colonies cope with disease and mites.

Our winter meetings are held monthly at Topsham Rugby Club, Topsham, Devon EX3 0LX.

Free parking.

About the speaker

Jonathan PowellJonathan is a trustee of the Natural Beekeeping Trust as well as a founding member of Tree Beekeeping International, an organisation dedicated to furthering the craft of tree beekeeping.

He first started beekeeping as a child in the 1970s, taught by his grandfather who kept bees from 1920s onward. In his beekeeping practice he is looking to learn from wild bees so as to let their preferences inform his beekeeping. To this end he was trained in the traditional tree beekeeping methods of Eastern Europe where once 100s of thousands of hives used to be kept inside man-made tree cavities. He founded a peer group of natural beekeepers in Somerset, writes at beeswing.net and gives talks and training on Bee Centered Beekeeping and Tree Beekeeping.

​He is the author of the first ever Guide to Tree Beekeeping.

World Bee Day 2018

Start date

The original idea for a World Bee Day came form the Slovenian Beekeepers' Association and has now received support from 53 countries and is intended to raise public awareness of the importance of bees and apicultural products has an important role in the effort to protect bees and beekeeping.

World  Bee Day logo
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about World Bee Day

Bees play an extremely important role in nature. It is said that there would be no food or human life without bees.

Bees and other pollinators are very important for human survival. One third of food produced in the world depends on pollination and bees play the most important role among the pollinators. By pollination, bees contribute to successful agricultural production, to providing food security, and they also assure the nutritional security of the population with their highly nutritious products, such as honey.

World Bee Day is celebrated in May when the number of bees in colonies increases in the southern hemisphere to such an extent that colonies may swarm, which is their natural way of reproduction. During this period, bees are most numerous and the need for pollination is at its maximum.  On the otherhand, it is autumn in the southern hemisphere and time for harvesting honey.

Honiton Show 2018

Start date

The 128th Honiton Agricultural Show takes place on Thursday 3rd August 2017 from 8am - 6pm at the Honiton Showground with over 400 trade stands, including crafts, shopping and fabulous food.. don't forget to visit the honey tent!

For further information and to purchase tickets, visit the Honiton Show website.


Members are again invited to supply honey products for this year's show.  Other bee products will be welcome.

When bringing your honey to the show to sell, why not consider putting an entry into one of the classes at the show.  There are lots of classes apart from honey and wax - cake making, photographs of interest to beekeepers - and much more.   The more entries there are the greater interest is generated for both the beekeepers and the general public.

If you would like to sell honey or other bee products at the Honiton Show, please complete the price list and return to Sylvia Guest (details on price list) to be received no later than Monday 22nd July 2018.