Stewarding at the 2022 National

The Chief Steward at the National Honey Show is looking for volunteers to assist in stewarding during the three days (27th – 29th October) of this prestigious event in the Beekeeping calendar

Helpers are also being sought with the setup on Wednesday 26th and closing down on the afternoon & evening of Saturday 29th October.

Perhaps you were one of many Reigate members providing help in 2021. If you would like to volunteer again or perhaps for a first time this year, please apply using the ‘Stewards Request form 2022’ below to let Bill Fisher know which days, mornings or afternoons you would be available to help.

General Stewarding Duties at The National Honey Show 2022

  • Watching over a room full of exhibits; answering questions; ensuring the exhibits are not touched or stolen.
  • Stewarding a lecture; being available to show people out in the event of a fire, passing around the microphone for questions.
  • Standing by a doorway; making sure only people with a valid wristband are allowed to enter.
  • Giving directions to visitors.
  • Running errands for judges and other stewards.

The lectures and workshops are now all on the NHS website –

If you are able to volunteer this year when otherwise not planning to be sitting in on a lecture yourself, or participating in a workshop; please:

  1. Download and complete the Stewards request form 2022 with your availability details.
  2. Re-save the form with your name in the title
  3. Return the form to Bill Fisher at

If you are planning to help and are not a member of the National Honey Show please make sure you provide your postal mailing address, in case it is necessary to mail out Entry tickets prior to the show.

And then … why not take the opportunity to also enter into some (or even just one) of the National Honey Show Competition Classes as well! 


Surrey Honey Show – Sat 8th Oct 2022

  We are delighted to invite all Surrey members to enter this year’s

Surrey Beekeepers Honey Show.

Despite another year with no Surrey County Show we can still host and enjoy our annual Surrey Honey Show.

All the usual categories will be available with winners certificates and cups. (Plus some cash prizes!) So that you have time to prepare and plan for the event, the Show will be held on Friday and Saturday 7th & 8th October at Reigate’s superb apiary at Henfold Copse.

Friday 7th October

 Consolidated deliveries from each division to the event venue, Henfold Copse.

Saturday 8th October

Show Day and Judging  


Schedule and Entry Form

download from < HERE >


Registration of Entries

Get your entries in prior to the deadline of Monday 3 October


Drop-off Times

With your association’s representative of the Surrey Show who
will arrange delivery, or personally to Henfold apiary on the

Friday 7th between midday and 4 o’clock or between 9 and 10 o’clock on the Saturday 8th morning

Judging will take place between 10:30 and 3:00

Prize Giving at 4:30

(Organised by the Surrey Beekeepers’ Association)



Chairman’s View – September 2022


As this extraordinary Summer season of beekeeping draws to a close this month, I trust that your own efforts have been fruitful, at least educational, and certainly interesting.

Our final Summer Wednesday evening meeting will be on the 7th September, after which we enter into Monthly Winter meeting mode.

The first of these Winter meetings will be on the 12th October, inside the pavilion at Henfold, when we will be introduced to Honey Ferments and Jun Kombucha. Annie Simpkins a recent new member, will present how to ferment garlic, ginger, and a wide variety of fruits in honey.  Find out what an oxymel is and how to make Jun Kombucha – a fermented green tea sweetened with honey.  Samples and tastings of a wide variety of these products will be available.

The November meeting, on Wednesday the 2nd in the Henfold pavilion will be dedicated to our AGM and Presentation of Honey Show trophies and Beekeeping Qualification certificates. Formal Notice and details of the proceedings will be circulated very soon.

December sees Reigate Beekeepers hosting the SBKA’s own AGM on Saturday the 3rd, that is Open to all Members of SBKA’s Divisions. The formal business of reports and election of Officers & Trustees, is followed by a buffet and then a talk. This year VInce Gallo will be presenting a new and sure to be entertaining talk on Bee Behavior.

And if you miss the talk on the 3rd, or want a repeat, Vince will be presenting again, to us at our December Winter meeting on the 7th, but without the buffet.   

More details of the Winter Talks programme are in this months BeeNews and will be added to the website and kept updated as needed.

Meanwhile, THIS month we have a Bees& Beekeeping show to present to the public, and then not one but four Honey Show bench competitions in which you can ALL participate.

If you have not already offered and can help with the Bees & Beekeeping show in Dorking on the 10th September, do contact me directly, we could do with a few more members to support activities on stands, stalls and displays.

And entering into the Honey Show bench competitions is both fun another beekeeping learning experience.  Details are elsewhere on the Members website HERE   

Congratulations to ALL who contributed to this season’s record breaking harvest of Honey from RBKA’s apiaries.  With a few more supers still to be extracted, and including the spring extractions from Buckland and Brockham apiaries, the current total honey crop for the year is an amazing 2120lbs (961Kg).  Huge thanks to Richard Ramsden for the contributions from Brockham (1037lbs) and Buckland (607lbs) under his management (and most of the extraction); to Mary & Jim Wynn for the returning to form by Mickleham with 200lbs;  and for the useful bonus from Henfold’s colonies with 276 lbs … thanks to all the hive groups, mentors and to Karen & Simon Ford’s overseeing.  And more thanks to those members that have helped with the extraction, principally of the Henfold & Micklemham honey.

Well done Team RBKA.  

Richard Bradfield
30th August 2022
mob: 07923 600266


Reigate Beekeepers BeeNews – Sep 2022


Chairman’s View – August 2022


After the white heat of July, the temperatures may be in decline during August, but there will be no let-up in the tempo of activity for ourselves or for our bees.

When not actually pre-occupied with protecting their honey from robbers (including us) the bees will still be out looking for late season sources of forage, and we have plenty to do in and around our apiaries – and beyond. 

But first off … congratulations to the seventeen members who took and ALL passed their Basic Assessments during July. Eleven passed with Credit and three more passed with Distinction. This is also a very satisfying result for all those who had been variously training, mentoring or coaching the candidates in Study Groups, Hive Teams or in the Mock Basic session and in preparing the apiary and hives.

One of the Assessors, emailing me on another matter, added that it “was such a pleasure to carry out the assessments at a well organised and set-up club.  And, with well trained beekeepers.”   I say, Wow … well done everyone.

So, looking forward into August …  

Another reminder about the Autumn Bee Health Clinic at Henfold during the otherwise regular Wednesday 10th August.  Bring along samples of bees culled from your own colonies to have tested for Nosema, and if you can,  maybe also help Bob Maurer with preparation of the samples for assessment under the microscopes.

The following Wednesday 17th, the intention is to be extracting honey from Mickleham and Henfold supers in the Pavilion during the late pm & evening. BUT, we do need volunteers to help prepare the pavilion and set up equipment during the 16th, some experienced members to lead less or inexperienced members learning on-the job during the 17th, and then some to help clear up during the 18th … ensuring the pavilion is returned to a ‘non-sticky’ condition. Contact me directly with offers of help and requests for participation.  In the process of helping towards RBKA’s honey crop harvesting, its a great way to experience using a range of extracting equipment, most of which is hireable to use for your own crop.

Do also start to think about and actively plan to enter into some, or ALL, the Honey Show competitions coming up in September and October. Information-a-plenty is provided elsewhere on this website and the Show Schedules include Competition Classes to suit all levels of ability.       

So what about my opening reference to there also being plenty to do beyond our apiaries?    

Way back in December 2019, Steve Riley attended a Winter meeting and presented an assessment of biotechnical methods (including Queen Caging) for controlling Varroa to allow chemical free beekeeping. His follow-up in March this year then described progress being made in selecting for bees that manage their own varroa loads and how beekeepers can identify these traits in their own colonies. At the close of that second presentation, Steve left us with an open invitation to visit his colonies in Westerham and see those traits first hand. An invitation for a group of RBKA members is now being arranged for the morning and early afternoon of Wednesday 10th August. Participants will be taking a packed lunch with them and dashing back to Henfold for the Evening Meeting and the Autumn Bee Health Clinic! 

The group needed to be limited to about 12 to 15; so invitations to participate were initially only circulated to our 2022 Hive Mentors and Apiary Managers. They being best placed to pass on their observations and learnings whilst mentoring or in potentially applying in management of our apiaries. By the last Wednesday evening’s meeting in July there was scope to open the invitation to all members to fill remaining places by emailing Colin Clement directly. Places were being confirmed in order of receipt of request, until reaching the quota. This will hopefully be an interesting experience for those able to attend and one that could be shared with others and possibly repeated earlier next year.

One thing is for certain, there is nothing remotely boring  about beekeeping … except perhaps endlessly cranking a manual honey extractor at the close of a bumper season.  One problem I don’t have for all the wrong reasons.

Richard Bradfield
4th August 2022
mob: 07923 600266


Reigate Beekeepers BeeNews – Aug 2022


South of England Honey Show 2022, 24-25 Sept.

The first of this years Honey Show season’s opportunities to enter show bench exhibits. 

Event details below … 

… or click HERE to go direct to the SoE Honey Show schedule, rules and entry form.  

For the SoE Honey Show Schedule and Entry Form,


Visit  and click on the ‘Bees & Honey Schedule & Entry Form’ button,


Go direct by clicking HERE

91st National Honey Show 2022 – Get Ready

Start planning your NHS Show Bench entries now. Use equivalent class entries into the SoE, RBKA and SBKA shows to practice and develop exhibit preparation skills. 

Shy of entering the NHS Open or Member classes? There are also NHS Surrey Classes, open only to SBKA Members. See Page 17 of the NHS Schedule and the foot of this post.

NHS Schedules – available NOW

Full Schedule

Classes Only
Download [304KB PDF] the 38 page 2022 Show Schedule of Classes. Updated 02/07/22.

Special Entry Classes for Younger Beekeepers 2022
Download [1MB PDF] Talented younger beekeepers and bee supporters invited to enter the wide range of exciting classes in the show. These classes make a fantastic display that visitors always love to see. They will be featured on social media for the entire world to admire.

Entry Forms – available from August

Entry forms for essay, video, microscope slide and photograph classes must reach the Entries Secretary by 12th September. No late entries permitted for these classes 

Entry forms for all others classes must reach the Entries Secretary by 10th October. Late entries may be made until the 17th October ( but will incur an additional late entry fee of £10)

Workshop Bookings – more info during August 

Note: only National Honey Show Members and those with a daily admission ticket can attend Lectures and book into workshops and or demonstrations.

Lecture Convention – programs available NOW

Main Programme

Beginners Programme

Bee Craft Programme.

Trade Stands – see WHO will be there. 

Plenty of retail therapy to be had in between viewing the show benches, attending lectures, participating in workshops or networking in the restaurant. 

Show Admission  

Book at the NHS website shop 1st Sept – 11 Oct.

Day Tickets

2022 Honey Show – Entry Registration CLOSED

Saturday 1st October

ON-LINE Registration now CLOSED 

Regular Entry Closed during 26th September and Late Entries Closed during 27th September. 

All exhibits will be displayed and judged  behind closed doors during the morning of 1st October, under the watchful eyes of our Show Bench Secretary, Stewards and the lenses of cameras.

From 2pm members will be able to visit Henfold and view the Show benches as the judging is completed and final Certificates are being awarded. 

The 2022 Honey Show Schedule includes:

♦ 22  Members Classes

 3 Children’s Classes

♦ Rules for all the Classes

♦ Cake and Biscuit  Recipes

Entry Labelling instructions.

[Read more…]

Reigate’s 2022 Honey Fair – 10th September

The 10th September will see us re-opening the doors of the United Reformed Church hall in West Street, Dorking to the public at 10:30am until 4pm.

After a two year break, this facility was used for our last Honey Fair 2019 and provides the opportunity for Reigate Beekeepers to once again promote the practice of Beekeeping and to educate and inform the public about honey bees in general.

It is hoped that as many of you as possible and needed can participate and help in some way. 

The format will differ from all previous Fairs in that we will not be including the Show Benches for our annual Honey show.  That show will be being held separately on the 1st October in the Henfold Apiary’s pavilion, as during 2020 and 2021.

In place of the Show Benches, for this Honey Fair the intention is to use the freed-up space within the Church Hall to provide Displays & Practical Demonstrations of Beekeeping Equipment explaining their purpose and use.

These would be complimented with Information Posters, Candle Rolling, Honey Tasting, Sales stalls of Members & RBKA honey & other ‘products of the hive‘ and at least two Observation hives

We will also be providing Refreshments for the visiting pubic.

All this will be happening on Saturday the 10th September, with doors open from 10:30am until 4pm.

Setting up and Clearing Down

Delivery, off loading and setting up of all displays stall and equipment etc will commence at 8am, and needs to be ready to open to he public by 10:30am.

Clearing down, packing up and removing can commence at 4pm and will need to be completed by 6pm.

Volunteers Please

All these plans need volunteers to help to make them happen and keep them happening throughout the event.

Display, Demonstration, Stall and Service Leaders and Assistants are required for all these activities

Transportation of equipment to and from site will also be essential.

Serving refreshments and cakes etc to the paying public. Could you help with serving refreshments and/or provide cakes for for sale.

Download Honey Show A4 posters and A5 flyers to forward or print and display.

Spread the word – ask your local stores, library, public venues to display a poster. 

Please register you ability to help in some way here:

Car Parking

For members and public alike, parking will need to be in any of the 10 different car parks around the venue . There is no suitable parking within the grounds of the Church and its Hall. 

Some Public Car Parks are within a few minutes walking distance, with others between 7 to 16 minutes walking distance. No parking is possible in front of the venue (West Street), with Drop-Offs and Pick-Ups at the rear hall doors only being possible from the Church Street or Artisan Market car parks behind the venue (both off Church Street).

You can pay for your parking by phone, app or online, using your credit or debit card with RingGo. Please note, when using RingGo additional charges may apply. Coins are still accepted at or payment machines.

Charges are currently posted by MVDC

as £1 per hour.

Full MVDC parking details here.

  • Church Street ( RH4 1BT ) – 31 Long & Short stay spaces – conveniently behind the URC Hall.
  • Artisan Market ( RH4 1BT ) ~ 20 spacesNot an MVDC car park – next to the URC Hall
  • St Martins Walk ( RH4 1DX ) – 239 Long / 137 Short stay spaces
  • South Street ( RH4 2JX ) – 21 Long & Short stay spaces
  • High Street ( RH4 1YA ) – 97 Long & Short stay spaces
  • Junction Road ( RH4 1QL ) – 32 Long & Short stay spaces
  • Southside ( RH4 1AE ) – 170 Long & Short stay spaces
  • Dene Street ( RH4 2DP ) – 26 Long & Short stay spaces
  • North Street ( RH4 1DE ) – 16 Short stay spaces
  • Pippbrook ( RH4 1SJ ) -115 Long & Short stay spaces – Sat only 

Please contact Richard Bradfield either by email, mobile (07923 600266) or in person to offer your services or to ask what you could do towards making the show a GREAT DAY. 

Download Honey Show A4 posters and A5 flyers to forward or print and display.

Spread the word – ask your local stores, library, public venues to display a poster. 

Autumn Bee Clinic 2022 – 10th August, from 3pm

The autumn Adult Bee Health Clinic will this be provided at the Henfold pavilion during Wednesday 10th August from 3pm until 8pm.

Bring tp the clinic, or arrange for others to deliver, your ’30 bee’ samples you need to take from each of your colonies.     

Bob Maurer will set up (and demonstrate) equipment to hoped for volunteering assistants, during the afternoon to assess colony samples provided by members as well as colonies from the RBKA’s own apiaries. 

A fee of £1 per colony sample applies for your first 4 colonies, reducing to 50p per colony for additional colony samples. 

Find out how YOUR colonies are fairing. 

For tips and guidance on how to take

samples of 30 bees from your hives …

go to Bee Sampling Techniques  

Message from Bob Maurer

We are likely to have to restrict our clinic activities to Nosema because I may be the only microscopist during the evening.  But if you would like to help, or have a go, do come along to the clinic and join in. Your ‘apprenticeship’ will include grinding bees and preparing slides but you may also get a chance to have a go on the microscopes and see what nosema looks like.

If we can get enough of you trained to use microscopes we could do so much more with our clinics.

After this Autumns clinic, our next will hopefully run in parallel with our auction at Mickleham next spring. 


If you would like to actively participate in the operation of the next clinic, do please contact Bob Maurer by email Click Here

Why test for Nosema?

The severity of any Nosema found determines how you deal with an affected colony.  Options include:

  • Bailey comb change (next spring) for a diseased colony or possibly the use of one of the supplements currently claiming to assist with nosema.
  • Between Mid-March to Mid-July, the Shook Swarm procedure would be an option.
  • Knowledge of the presence of nosema in a colony should also be a reason NOT to unite it with another that is clear!

Recruiting the Autumn Clinic team.

Bob Maurer welcomes members offering to be part of the teams of ‘bee crushers’ and ‘microscopists’ that will be needed during the afternoon and evening.

There will be a briefing for new volunteers that involves grinding up the sample of bees and placing a drop of the resulting liquid onto a slide. No experience necessary – training will be provided. This is a job that would suit anyone thinking they may be interested in microscopy.  Anyone who helps will be given the chance to see anything interesting that is found and time permitting, Bob will try to give everyone a chance to have a go on a microscope. No problem if there are more ‘bee crushers’ than needed, Bob will endeavour to make sure everyone gets a chance to see any nosema found. But if there are a lot of people it must be understood that there will be a bit of hanging around.

If you would like to take part, please let Bob know so he is able to prepare sufficient seats.  07740 707500

Read more about Nosema (click here)

For more details about identifying adult bee diseases and how to take the sample of bees, we can do no better than to refer you to your January 2014 edition of BeeCraft and direct you to Page 17 to read Bob Maurer’s article, one of a series of BeeCraft articles on Microscopy.
Remember that if you send a sample to Fera, you will be charged £10 to check just for nosema. These tests will be carried out with a light microscope, just as our local microscopists would do.

Footnote: It is also possible to request more sophisticated molecular pathogen screening for nosema. This can cost ~£120 per colony. (Reductions are offered for 5 or more colonies.)  For a further ~£120 per colony, your sample can be checked for viruses.


Chairman’s View – July 2022


July will be a busy enough time with actual beekeeping, and so I am particularly grateful to those who are about to, or may yet help with our attendances at local village shows and fetes this month. Thank you in advance. Our presence at such shows provides tremendous opportunities to engage with the public.

We can inform them about the role of pollinators in general; and how the honey bee, beekeeping and beekeepers play their part. And of course, how the public can help the bees too.

RBKA’s stall will be at Gatton Park on the 3rd and South Holmwood on the 23rd of this month and is scheduled to be at Oakwood on the 13th and Capel on the 20th August. If you are able to help on the stalls at one of these remaining events, particularly if it’s on or near your ‘home’ patch, Geoff Pye would love to hear from you.

Final ‘revision’ and preparations will already be being undertaken by our 2022 candidates for the Basic Assessments during this month. With the support from Colin Clement & Jim Cooper during the Monday eve Basic’s study group sessions, their Hive Leaders during Wednesday evenings, and Bob Maurer‘s Mock Basic session last month, I am confident that the 16 candidates will not need luck. But best wishes for successful assessments for all.

Thoughts are turning to the extraction of honey from both Mickleham and Henfold’s supers. Current planning is to undertake this midweek during mid August in the Henfold pavilion. Setting up would be on a Tuesday, extraction during the Wednesday evening and clearing up on the Thursday. We look like having a decent quantity of honey to extract, the equipment to do it and practiced hands able instruct and supervise the doing. But this year, in addition to calling for volunteers to help with the doing, we are looking for someone to pull together and arrange all those elements into a managed event. Event and team management experience is what is needed for the role, not necessarily any skill in extracting … yet. Do please contact Karen Ford or myself if you could get, maybe literally, stuck into the task. 

Meanwhile, an appeal on behalf of our Treasurer Vince Gallo, and Quartermaster Maggie Bourne; especially as we find ourselves at a time when many are needing additional supers, frames and foundation and, very soon, then jars for the honey from their already full supers. The QM store room usually only holds limited stocks of equipment, primarily intended to service the needs of RBKA’s own apiaries. If you are in need of equipment for your own bees, it needs to be pre-ordered, paid for, delivered into Henfold and THEN collected. Whilst some un-booked requests may be met on a Wednesday evening, please do not expect or rely upon equipment you want being available. Do plan ahead please to avoid disappointment.   

Richard Bradfield
1st July 2022
mob: 07923 600266


Chairman’s View – June 2022


As we celebrate the Queens Platinum Jubliee, here’s hoping our own colonies’ queens can demonstrate more longevity than has been the norm recently. I am hearing, and seeing at Henfold, that strong colonies with access to plentiful forage were filling their supers early during May. Are we now already into a ‘June Gap’? What prospects for a summer flow? Answers please in the Comments Box at the foot of these ramblings

Wednesdays at Henfold have been busy, with an average of over 65 attendees each evening since mid April, and many new Beginners and visitors. My thanks to Andrew Buchanan and Simon Ford (wearing his Membership Sec hat) who have between them been keeping track of who is doing what, where … and why.  Simon is also gently (so far) chasing up some of our newer attendees for anticipated but still awaited membership fees.

I am delighted to report that RBKA have received another extremely generous donation from the Lord Hanson Foundation that will be put to good use in further developing  and maintaining our facilities at the Henfold Apiary.

Maggie Bourne and Vince Gallo are being kept busy in the QM Stores … do please consider that they  want to be able close-up shop and (also) leave at a sensible time.  The QM store aims to be open from 6pm during the Wednesday. If you are going onto the hives after the ‘shout-outs’, please request and pay for equipment and materials to take away for your own bees promptly before 6:30, so that orders can be prepared and ready for you to simply collect when you return from the bees.

Good to see Hive Teams of Beginners, Basics and now also Improvers, all very active & engaged. Thanks to Colin Clement and all the Beginners & Basics  Mentors and to Keith Mackie and the Improvers Mentors.  Not long now before the Basic Assessment candidates are assessed in July (9th & 16th), and a reminder that a Mock Basic session is being provided on the 18th this month that is very well worth candidates attending.

Congratulations to Trevor Keast upon the publication in this June’s BBKANews of his successes in the November BBKA Examinations … a Distinction for Module 6 – Honeybee Behaviour and achieving the Intermediate Theory Certificate and the Qualified Beekeeping Certificate. 

Congratulations also to our BeeNews editor Sue Scates on this months fine bumper edition. By way of an early heads-up … Sue will be away travelling from Jan-March 2023 so Sue and I are are needing to find someone keen to either take over from Sue during January next year permanently, or temporarily … either until her return, or to subsequently share the role from April 2023. If interested, please chat with myself or Sue.

One further appeal to close on is for ANY spare honey in street legal labelled jars that you could and would like to sell. We are seeing huge demand for local honey at the village fairs, fetes and pageants that RBKA have been attending so far this year. And congratulations to Karen Ford for managing the stall and display at the recent Cowpie event; achieving nearly £1000 of sales of honey and other hive products.  Very happy to sell Members honey alongside RBKA honey at upcoming Shows and Fete  We can also do with more volunteers to help on or even run our stall and displays.     

Richard Bradfield
1st June 2022
mob: 07923 600266


Reigate Beekeepers BeeNews – June 2022


Chairman’s View – May 2022


The weather we have just experienced during April has a lot to answer for this year.

After initially plunging us back into a dank, dismal and damp start, the sun finally broke though. But the northerly and easterly winds took more than the edge off the  warming rays. I suspect that those of us with hives residing in screened sun traps might have been seeing their bees fairing a little better than those with hives in more open settings.

After a false start, with the intended 1st meeting on the 6th April having been cautiously postponed by a week due to low temperatures, strong winds, overcast skies and the threat of heavy rain, we finally got going on the13th.

Many of the ~70 members who will have since attended and participated in the three full (literally) weekly Summer meetings during April, may have been aware of Jim Wynn’s absence from Henfold, and our media channels. Very regrettably for RBKA, Jim has for personal reasons stood down from the Committee and from his role as our Education Programme Manager. Whilst stepping back from these two roles, Jim remains a strong and active supporter of Reigate Beekeepers and will continue to help Mary in her management of our Mickleham Apiary. Jim has also undertaken to remain as Reigate’s AHAT Leader, as well as the Surrey BKA AHAT Coordinator; should the need for our action against the Yellow Legged Hornet arise. 

Another role that Jim had undertaken for the past two years was that of Reigate Representative to the Surrey Beekeepers Association. We need to maintain that representation by a Committee member. Therefore, I am happy to announce that Gill Simpson has agreed to being co-opted into that role. It is one that I, as a Surrey Council member myself, cannot undertake because as an elected trustee of Surrey BKA, I am supposed to ‘leave my Reigate hat at the door’ when attending Council meetings. I am sure you will join me welcoming Gill to the role of briefing Surrey on the activities of the division and informing the meeting about any important divisional issues that need input from the Council.

The Education of prospective, new and not so new beekeepers has always been at the core of our key obligations as a division of Surrey BKA to:  “(1) Promote and further the craft of beekeeping and the science of bees and their pathogens, to the public good, and to (2) Advance the education of the public in the environmental and economic importance of bees.”

Since being presented with and taking on the challenge of Education Programme Manager at the commencement of the Covid-19 pandemic; Jim’s educational experience, enthusiasm, ground breaking, technical and hitherto tireless inputs, have been enormously appreciated by myself, Committee Officers & his fellow Committee Members; as well as, I am sure, by all RBKA’s Members. Quite how and who manages the Education Programme in the longer term will be being considered during the months ahead.       

Meanwhile, whilst we are regrettably without a Manager of the Education Programme; the content itself was already falling into place and is also now underway. Actual delivery of the elements of the Program are being variously either provided by or overseen by the likes of Simon Ford, Vince Gallo, Colin Clement, Keith Mackie & Anna Slade, along with supporting hive tutors and welcome inputs from our Master Beekeepers. Whilst Andrew Buchanan has recommenced his keen involvement in keeping a tally of all-comers to the Wednesday evening meetings; tracking who is doing what, where and to what end!

The Basic’s preparation on-line Study Group and an Intermediate’s Queen Rearing project commenced early in April. Beginners hive teams and an Intermediate hive team commenced practical sessions by mid April and an Intermediate Module 1 on-line study Group is about to commence this month, as a shared venture with Croydon division.   

As I prepare these notes, the Reigate Beekeepers Auction of Bees and Beekeeping Equipment is yet to take place. With the Catalogue already being declared FULL with some 220 Lots, I trust that all will have has gone as smoothly as rounding up, receiving, identifying, auctioning and seeing-off that quantity of ad-hoc items can be expected to go … and that Vince Gallo has survived the experience! I will be sorry to have missed the bacon filled baps provided by Sue Hickson & Michelle Keast & co. Instead, I will be in the Highlands tucking into hot toasted, marmalade covered ‘Butteries’, that my Scottish cousins and hosts are assuring me are a local ‘health food delicacy’ on account of their fruit content. Hmmmm.

At this point in my script, I come across the crack in the record.

I need to reiterate appeals for more volunteers to not only help with, but in some cases, take some ownership of and lead the running of an RBKA stall at a Local Village show during the summer.  Such leaders will have plenty of support and guidance, but those providing the support cannot also be expected to be actively running ALL the shows themselves.  If at all possible, do please offer to take a lead role in running one of our invited appearances at a local show near you. Especially when the sun shines, such events are a real joy in which to participate … talking about your own favourite hobby with an inquisitive public.  What’s not to like.

Richard Bradfield
1st May 2022
mob: 07923 600266


Reigate Beekeepers BeeNews – May 2022


Bees for Development – Big Give Green Match Campaign

22 – 29th April 2022

The Project supports forest conservation and reduces extreme discrimination of the Batwa, a forest people in Uganda, through beekeeping. 

Visit the BfD website by  CLICKING HERE  

The Big Give Green Match Challenge is a match funding campaign where donations to participating charities are doubled. The match funds come from two sources – charities secure some of these (pledges) over the summer. These funds are then boosted by funds from a Big Give Champion (The Green Match Fund) which contributes to the match fund. This collective pot is used to double donations from online supporters when the campaign is live.

Spring Bee Health Clinic – 30th April 2022

The next Reigate (Members) Bee Health Clinic will take place on Saturday the 30th April in the Mickleham Village Hall  – same day and place as our Auction event – but from 10am until about 2pm.

This is an adult bee disease clinic, and will concentrate on Nosema spp. If time permits, Acarine testing will also be demonstrated, so members can see how it is done.

Testing your bees is an important part of your bee husbandry… so do ensure you take full advantage of this opportunity.

Deliver your (labelled) samples of (dead) bees, with payment, either …

  • to the Village Hall in Mickleham from 10 am until 2.00pm on Saturday 30th April, when they will be ‘checked in’.
  • to Henfold Copse during the Summer Evening Meeting on the 27th April and leave them in a box provided.
  • to a fellow Beekeeper, willing and able to bring them either to Henfold on Wednesday the 27th or to Mickleham on Saturday the 30th.
  • to Bob Maurer’s ‘drop box’ by prior arrangement ONLY by the 29th April. at 19, Fairlawn Drive, Redhill, Surrey, RH1 6JP (  07740 707500)

Samples must be individual labelled with your Name, your contact Phone Number and a Sample ID reference to the colony/hive from which the sample was taken.

See the advice below about taking samples of bees from you hives. [Read more…]

National Honey Show Ukraine Emergency Appeal

The National Honey Show has set up

a Just Giving Page to show support

for Ukrainian beekeeping friends.

Please give generously for the Disasters and Emergency Committee to benefit all Ukrainians.

It’s not just about the money. The number of donors sends a strong message of support to show Ukrainian beekeepers that we are thinking of them.

Do please help towards getting to over 500 donors …

BBKA – Winter Colony Survival – 2021/22 Survey

From: Leigh Sidaway, BBKA General Manager

Dear BBKA Member,
We are carrying out the BBKA overwinter colony survival survey for the winter 2021-2022.
The survey period is from 1st October 2021 until 1st April 2022. Please complete and return it before the 30th April.
All responses will be kept in confidence.
Many thanks for your time and support.The survey is very simple and only takes 5 minutes.

Here is the link to the survey: