Bee Update – June 22 2013
Just under two months ago I wrote about our newly installed bee hives at Compton Verney. I’m glad to say the bees have not only settled in well but are positively thriving! Regular updates from Rod our volunteer beekeeper have kept me aware of progress, and the whole process is captivating I have to say. On a number of occasions I’ve dropped by and paused a while to see busy bees flying back and forth from a specially constructed landing/take-off board – it is really rewarding to feel that as a team we are helping to prop-up our nationally challenged bee population.Rod himself was keeping bees even in his childhood, and despite a break has returned to keeping, this time with wife Val, and I’m glad to welcome them along with Tanya Weaver to the Compton Verney volunteer team. I can honestly say I’m very reassured to have such a focussed team on board. Rod’s knowledge, attention to detail and sheer enthusiasm combines to make bee keeping at Compton Verney an exciting prospect for the future.
We have acres of parkland that has recently been put down to wildflower meadow and a woodland garden full of flora, yet we continue to add more that will be of benefit to bees. This spring we started the improvement of our west lawn with a volunteer plug planting project as part of Give & Gain day. One thousand native wildflower plugs were planted and were paid for by two kind people, namely Rosanna Bickerton and our founder Sir Peter Moores; both of whom have been hugely supportive in bringing bees to site from the outset.
We have settled the hives into a location away from the main visitor routes, but not too far for those who find bees of interest. They are to be found in the west lawn near our ha-ha, positioned beyond a towering London Plane tree and nestled in a wildflower lawn all of their own; a des-res indeed! If you want to find them during a visit to Compton Verney head around to the gallery as usual, then pass around and behind the mansion to the west lawn. Following either of the mown paths will lead you to the bee hives which are located back behind the natural fibre ropes.
If you’re a bee keeper or are interested in learning more about bee keeping I’m glad to say there’s an ideal opportunity during our ‘Grounds Weekend’ of 29th and 30th June. Rod, a member of the Shipston Beekeepers and British Beekeepers Associations will be stationed near the hives at key times to talk bees, there will be equipment on display and of course you’ll get ample opportunity to see our bees at work – from a comfortable distance of course! Do click on the links below for more information on visiting, as there’s lots more going on around the grounds.I hope to bring you a detailed article about our bees in the near future, so please do follow the blog for more updates. You can also add any comments or questions you may have about bee keeping in the comments box below, and I’ll pass these on to our beekeeper for a response as soon as practical.
Many thanks for clicking on our grounds blog, please do stop by again!