So, you want to keep bees…

Ready to take the leap? Here’s how to take your first steps

Being a beekeeper means being responsible for the health and wellbeing of a colony, or colonies, of bees that live within a hive. Before you take up the craft you’ll need to get some training to gain the skills and knowledge necessary to safely handle bees. Most courses offered provide both theory and practical hands-on training. You also need to be sure that you have the time to dedicate to these little critters, which on average need one to two hours each week.

What will I need?

Beginners just need a hive, a hive tool to pry up the frames, a smoker to calm the bees and protective clothing (a beekeeper suit and gloves). In time you’ll need to invest in another hive too, so make sure you have somewhere safe and secure to keep your bees without impacting on the people around you.

Where can I train?

No matter where you live there’ll be a beekeeping group nearby to provide training and support at various levels. To find your nearest group check out the following links:

England –

Scotland –

Wales –

Northern Ireland – or

Get in touch with your local group and see what’s offer in your area.