Welwyn news - May 2013

by Peter Mathews

Hertfordshire BKA President

We are very pleased to welcome David Wingate of St Albans as our President for 2013-14. And, wish him a highly successful and enjoyable year in office.

On the Trail of the American Honeybee

BBC Radio 4 broadcast on Tues, 26th March at 11.00am—some of the problems confronting American beefarmers pollinating the almond crops in California, still on iplayer:- http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b01rg226/On_the_Trail_of_the_American_Honeybee/

Welwyn Shop

Unlike last year, there are no excuses for not preparing for the year ahead. The shop has a good stock of all BS frames and foundation. Prices have largely remained unchanged for the past 3 years. There is one small price ‘rise’, we are replacing DN4 frames with DN5—this is the same thing but with the full width top bar. DN5s are less prone to brace comb. A few DN4s are still available at £8 / 10; DN5s are £9 / 10.
We do not stock anything other than BS. But, please contact me if you use Langstroth, Commercial etc as I can include you in our foundation order, passing on any discount. Some members have also asked about drone foundation. Although, we have a little in stock, there seems little demand. Again, please let me know if you are likely to want this in any quantity.

Prices are approx 10% below list with no p&p. Email; petermathews@gmx.com or Call 01707 321018.

Honey Jars

If you ordered an attic full of honey jars last time round, and had precious little honey last year, then you may well still have a good stock of jars. On the other hand, if your stock is getting low then you may be interested in stocking up, I have a quotation from Freeman & Harding based on one pallet. Price works out at £44 to £50 /gross including VAT and delivery (reflecting full or part pallet). The on line price is £58 /gross including BBKA discount and delivery. A number of local suppliers also have jars for sale, and so we will only place a bulk order if there is sufficient demand.

The jars we use are from Freeman & Harding. These are the best and the only jars designed for a 1lb fill. They also come with fitted lids to avoid contamination. There are cheaper versions eg Wynne Jones currently has jars on special offer at £31 / gross plus £12 carriage. These are from the Bristol Bottle Co – but, were the poorest quality jar when we last did a comparison.

Please let me know if you want jars this summer. I would like to know :- 1) What you want and 2) the Maximum Number you are prepared to take to help make up an order. It’s okay if you are short on space and 1) and 2) are the same thing.

Preparing for The Modules

Following on from our successful Preparing for The Basic, we are now offering a workshop over 2 evenings Preparing for Module 1. This is based upon the workshop run at The Spring Convention by Margaret Murdin and will use her material. The first evening will look at the syllabus, dealing with FAQ, reading list, sources of information etc. The second evening will deal with exam technique, past papers and what the examiner is looking for. The workshop is intended for those wanting to take Module 1 in the Autumn or next Spring.

In other associations prospective candidates form study groups to get best value out of the BBKA correspondence course. Our aim is to do something similar.

Please register your interest with our Training Officer, Mike Goodhew, email :- mike.goodhew@ntlworld.com

General Husbandry

Christine Phillips is still collecting names for people interested in attending a General Husbandry Course. This is to be covered in 10 sessions, which may be run over at weekends. Cost is likely to be £35, although there may be a subsidy on this. Contact Christine:- christineyallop.phillips@gmail.com


The European Food Safety Standards Committee will be voting on Monday 29th for a moratorium involving a 2 year ban on select pesticides. Nature posted a pre-vote review last week -


The real question is ‘What is going to replace them?’ Organophosphates would seem a worse option.

Diary Dates

Social Evening at The Waggoner’s, Ayot Green
We resume our informal social evenings at the Waggoners on Tuesday, 7th May from 8pm. Just show up. Please let me know if you want me to bring along foundation or frames.

Herts County Show
Sat. 25th & Sun 26th May—Redbourn, County Show Ground. This year the event is not part of BeeWorld, but is a joint event between St Albans, North Herts and Welwyn. As usual we need honey and other hive produce and helpers. This is now the top country show, after losing that at Hatfield House. Participants enjoy an excellent day out with free entry to the rest of the show. Please contact Phill Jepson to secure your ticket tel 01707 881095 email p.jepson@ntlworld.com

Hatfield House
Garden Show Friday 31st May—Sunday 2nd June

Welwyn Street Market - Saturday, 22nd June
We have been participating in the Welwyn Festival longer than any other event. It has proved to be one of the best for honey sales typically 100+ sales in the space of the morning. Offers of help and produce for sale to Peter Folge: tel 01438 816211, email the_beekeeper@hotmail.com

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