North Herts news by Christine Phillips

After a good summer for bees and honey the autumn seems to be too dry for the plants to produce much nectar and the bees are taking down huge amounts of sugar (or Ambrosia if you went to Andy Wattam's talk) I think they must be using it rather than storing it as our hives still don't feel very heavy.

The N. Herts winter programme of meetings and talks begins on October 20th with a welcome to all new members (or just interested newcomers) and a review of the season, followed by an update from Robin on the progress of Buzzworks and it's new offshoot Honeyworks.

In November (17th) Elizabeth Towler, ecologist for Letchworth Garden City Heritage Foundation is our guest speaker. LGCHF own most of the farms around Letchworth and they own three of our apiaries. They have excellent policies for encouraging biodiversity with wonderful hedgerows and wide field margins sown with wild flowers. Elizabeth will be able to tell us more about their philosophy and future plans.

Christmas Party
The best meeting of the season is of course the N. Herts BKA Christmas party. John Hill and his wife have been our hosts for many years and have very kindly agreed to put up with a lot of noisy beekeepers again on December 12th at Boxwood. Not to be missed!

Sometimes there seems to be a long gap between Herts Bees Newsletters and dates can change and meetings, particularly in the summer can be missed so we have been discussing how to improve communication between N. Herts members apart from by the regular Newsletter. Luke Adams, Secretary of Herts BKA has offered to set up a yahoo group for us which would seem an easy way to improve things. I will send out e-mails to all those whose addresses I have to ask if you would like to be included. Anyone whose e-mail address is not yet on the N. Herts list but would like to be included or has any comments or alternative ideas please contact Graham or me.

N. Herts Beekeepers will be having a stall at Hitchin Apple Day on October 24th in Hitchin old Market Place. Any members wishing to sell honey or wax products or prepared to spend some time talking to the public about beekeeping please contact me.

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