Training in aspects of beekeeping is available from many sources.

Initially we offer our own Introductory course, which is run in late February.

Within the RBKA (Rugby Beekeepers Association) we meet on the third Wednesday of the month in the Friends Meeting House Rugby. During the winter months we invite a speaker to present an interesting up to date talk.

During summer months we continue to meet without a formal speaker, this give both new and more experienced beekeepers a chance to discuss their own observations and raise questions.

Within Warwickshire we are especially privileged to have the headquarters of British Beekeepers Association (BBKA) and have access to frequent lectures and courses as well as being able to attend the talks given by those undertaking various examinations that involve such presentations. Mostly free of charge.

Another local branch, Warwick and Leamington, frequently have courses such as Microscopy, Skep Making etc to which we are invited. These usually carry a small charge to cover costs.

Nationally there are a series of exams that a beekeeper may choose to undergo. It is possible to progress to Master Beekeeper.
There is no necessity to follow this route, but it provides a wealth of useful and pertinent information to enhance a beekeeper’s ability.
There is one national test that is of great benefit. This is called the Basic Assessment and it has a practical element where an assessor will observe a basic hive examination and a theory element where the they will ask questions from a syllabus to test your knowledge. A candidate must have kept bees for a year before entering for the Basic Assessment.
The BBKA website contains the Basic Assessment syllabus as well as all of the other examinations.

Additionally, each year there is the BBKA summer convention held at Harper Adams College in Shropshire. Usually held in early April, it is run from a Friday through to Sunday. There are lectures and workshops available for an incredibly low fee of around £20 total. There is also a trade fair and many impromptu talks. Well worth a look!

Throughout the year there are also many different conferences, convention and shows. All advertised in the bee press.

BeeBase

Beebase News Web feed
  • Bee Health Advisory Forum - Science Advisor
    08 November 2021
    The Bee Health Advisory Forum brings Defra & Welsh Government policy and stakeholders together to discuss honey bee health issues and is inviting expressions of interest from applicants interested in being Bee Health Advisory Forum Science Advisors. The closing date for applications is Friday 17th December at 17:00.

    Full details about the role can be downloaded here and can be found on the Bee Health Advisory page. Please circulate to prospective advisors or feel free to apply.
  • The National Hive Count 2021
    02 November 2021
    The 2021 Hive Count launches today (2nd November)

    It is time to update your BeeBase records with the total number of overwintering hives as of 1st November 2021. You can do this by clicking this link to update your Hive Count: https://nationalbeeunit.com/secure/beekeeper/hiveCensus.cfm


    More details of this project, its importance and why we need your help can be found at:
    http://www.nationalbeeunit.com/index.cfm?pageid=362
  • Asian hornet nest killed in Portsmouth, Hampshire
    01 November 2021
    A report of Asian hornet in the Portsmouth area was received via the Asian Hornet Watch App on 29th October. The report was accompanied by clear photographs, allowing National Bee Unit inspectors to follow up the sighting quickly.

    An Asian hornet nest was located in a tree on Saturday 30th October and the nest was killed on Sunday 31st October. The nest will be sent to Fera for analysis and monitoring will continue in the area supported by local beekeepers.

    Further information regarding Asian hornet can be found on Defra's Asian Hornet sightings page and on our BeeBase Asian hornet page. Please direct all media enquiries to the Defra Press Office: 0330 0416560

    Use the ‘Asian hornet Watch’ app for Android and Iphone to report sightings.