Introduction to Beekeeping 2020 – Course 1

Course for 2020 has been postponed due to Covid 19 restrictions

Aims of Course

This course is suitable for those who wish to:-

  • Discover more about beekeeping                                 and/or
  • Decide whether  beekeeping is a suitable hobby         and/or
  • Start beekeeping.


The 14 hour course over 5 meetings is divided into:- 

  • Theory – 10 Hours at Bishops Cannings Village Hall, 2.5 miles from Devizes, Wiltshire.
  • Practical – 4 Hours at the Club Apiary, close to Bishops Cannings

Theory Sessions
Theory sessions will be held on Tuesdays or Wednesdays, between 7:30pm – 9:30pm.

                  Meetings: See Education main page for course dates

 The theory will  cover:-

  • Life cycle of the honey bee; nature of the colony and the individual bee; forage
  • Equipment : personal, hives and frames
  • Beekeeping Year: inspecting the bees throughout the seasons
  • Keeping the bees healthy: recognizing a healthy colony; managing pests and diseases.
  • Swarm management
  • Honey extraction; other products of the hive
  • Getting started: setting up an apiary; health and safety issues; purchasing bees and equipment

Practical Sessions
These sessions will be held mostly Saturdays for 2 hours between 12 noon – 2 pm or 2 pm – 4 pm.
Exact times and dates are weather dependent.

                  Meetings: See Education main page for course dates

 After kitting out – bee suits available to borrow – and practising how to light smokers, teams of 1 teacher and 3/4 students will work on a hive.
Teachers will demonstrate what to look for and how to handle bees  during an inspection but mostly these sessions are an opportunity for students to gain hands on experience.

 Course  Extension – the Apiary is open for  various weekend sessions  throughout the season  for course members to gain further experience handling bees.

Most of the teaching team have considerable experience and expertise in both beekeeping and teaching beekeeping and are well recognized at County level and above. The team includes the Wiltshire President, a bee farmer and seasonal bee inspector.

Cost of Course:
                  £36.00 for Full or Country members

                  For new members:
                  Full Membership is an additional £48.00, therefore TOTAL: £84.00      OR
                  Country Membership is an additional £36.50, therefore TOTAL: £72.50

The course fee includes Club membership as a Full or Country member (1st Oct. 2019 – 30th Sept. 2020)  This gives a range of benefits at club, county and national levels especially attending club meetings, handling the Club’s bees and receiving a comprehensive monthly national magazine, together with an excellent booklet for new beekeepers. Those wanting to start  keeping bees in 2020 should choose Full membership since it gives  immediate insurance. Country membership entails an upgrade and 6 weeks wait and is best suited to those not thinking of obtaining bees in 2020.

Early application is advised as the course is limited to 15 students to give sufficient individual attention. It also enables applicants to gain some of the membership benefits before the Course starts. Priority will be given to local members who make early application.

Please contact Dick Church, Education Co-ordinator, for further details. education @  (take out the spaces)