The branch will have a stall at both the Whitstable ‘Funday Sunday’ on 10th June and also the Faversham Garden Market on 24th June. We will have some local honey for sale as well as beeswax, but our main reason for taking part in each event is to talk with people about honey bees, and other bees, and help with identification of honey/bumble/solitary bees, or plants that are particularly suitable if you want to support bees and other pollinators. We will also have details of how to become a beekeeper, and will be selling ‘Bee Experience Day’ vouchers for anyone who’s stuck for a present for a nearby friend or relative.
A one-day event for members of the public who would like to know more about honey bees and beekeeping, either to see if they might wish to become beekeepers themselves or simply to learn a little about such a fascinating activity. To be held at the branch’s training apiary on the University of Kent campus at Canterbury.
We will start the day at 10.30 in the potting shed/training room where the W&HB branch Education Officer, Julie Coleman, will give a couple of hours instruction on the theory of modern beekeeping, together with some practical tips. This will be interspersed with some hands on practical work and plenty of tea and coffee. At 12.30 we will break for lunch: we can provide tea, coffee, cold drinks, and biscuits. but please bring a packed lunch.
After lunch, about 1.30 we will suit up in protective clothing provided and go into the apiary to look at the hives. You will be required to bring wellingtons or similar – something the suit can tuck into so there are no gaps, and marigold type washing up gloves. A long sleeve shirt may also be advised as bees can occasionally sting through suits. There will be several experienced beekeepers on hand so we can split into small groups where we can demonstrate handling bees and you can have a go if you wish.
We will then retire back to the shed where you can enjoy a hard earned cuppa and we can answer any questions and discuss the way forward if you decide beekeeping may be of interest to you. We should finish by 4.00 depending on how the day goes and the number of questions we have along the way. Beekeeping is a complex and fascinating pastime and there are always more questions than answers and always at least three answers to any question.
We have decided to levy a £10 fee for this event, payable on the day. If you wish, we can use this for you to become a Friend of the branch when memberships renew at the end of September. You will receive newsletters detailing monthly meetings and notices of events including our winter programme. You will also be able to attend our apiary inspections with Keith, our apiary manager, on Friday or Saturday mornings. If you decide not to continue we will take the £10 as a donation to branch funds, so we will be able to purchase more protective clothing for similar events in the future. You can upgrade this to full membership when you have bees of your own and have completed our Beginners’ Course.
The branch will be offering a full Beginners’ Course in September 2017, with further details to be confirmed nearer the time.
Anyone interested in this event should contact the Branch Secretary, Amanda Lee-Riley as soon as possible, via the contact details shown on our ‘About us’ page, shown above.