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'Thinking of Beekeeping'

'Thinking of Beekeeping'

About the Course

Update: COVID-19.
In line with Government advice, this is now delivered to one household, and outdoors only.
Would you relish careful 1-to-1 tuition in keeping honeybees?!
Social distancing will be observed at all times.
Dates flexible.

This introductory beekeeping course is designed to equip you with the knowledge to start caring for your own honeybees. Taught along the principles of the British Beekeepers’ Association methods, it is an intensive course but with a high practical content.

Our courses are delivered to fabulously restricted group sizes (max 4 students even pre-Covid) to ensure the most attentive and rewarding experience, learning and fun.

Beekeeping is a charming, fascinating and rewarding craft. A responsible beekeeper's aim is to have a thorough knowledge in order to be able to care for their colonies fully whilst using judicious consideration.

This 12 hour course consists of three afternoon sessions of 4 hours each. Spreading the course over a month gives the significant benefit of allowing students to see how the colonies progress and develop with the season. It also gives flexibility in case of challenging weather so that we can optimise all the timings of opening the hives appropriately and ensure that we satisfy your curiosity of handling frames of bees yourself.
The three half-day sessions are not all consecutive weeks, they are spread over 4 or 5 weeks for better appreciation of how the colony numbers and activities evolve.

The course fee also includes a private visit from the Tutor to your bees after the course to offer help and support if wanted (limited to 30 mile radius of Banbury).

Course content:
Why bees are important, are under threat, and need help.
What is a colony – the castes, basic anatomy, lifecycle, division of labour.
Forage – so important! Hungry bees are unhappy bees, and can starve.
How we keep bees – equipment, hive designs, clothing, apiary sites, responsibility and safety including stings.
Beekeeping year – seasonal activities of inspections, signs of trouble, impact of swarming, uniting, full winter preparations.
Bee behaviour – including swarming instinct and management.
Handling and examining a colony – practical inspections and manipulations.
Colony health and pests & disease – recognising healthy bees and brood, recognising disease, statutory requirements, varroa and its management.
Honey extraction.
Winter preparations.
Frame making.
Getting started.

If you will be redeeming a CraftCourses gift voucher on this course, the voucher code must be provided at the point of booking.

What's included in the price?

Beesuits and all necessary beekeeping equipment are supplied for use on the course, along with light refreshments and supporting literature. Please bring wellies or other boots that cover your ankles, and also reading glasses if worn.


Helen Raine at Helen's Local Honey
12 Old Glebe
Upper Tadmarton
OX15 5TH
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Suitable for

  • Adults
  • Limited mobility
  • Parking provided
  • Seniors
  • Suitable for beginners
  • Teenagers
  • Tutor can travel
  • Wheelchair users

Available as a gift

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12 hours (1:30pm to 5:30pm)

Available dates:

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