Welcome to the Stockport branch of the
Cheshire Beekeepers Association
The Stockport Branch (SBKA) of Cheshire Beekeepers has been supporting bees and beekeepers from Stockport and surrounding areas since 1969. With over 200 members from as far afield as Macclesfield, Buxton and Glossop, the branch provides an annual programme of meetings and events to promote beekeeping and help to educate the public about bee welfare.
SBKA seeks to promote beekeeping and bee welfare by participating in local shows and events and making presentations to schools and organisations. It also provides education, support and training opportunities to members. Recently, Stockport Council and Manchester Pest Control have been collaborating with SBKA to educate employees on the basics of beekeeping and providing support to establish apiaries on buildings and council property.
Stockport Beekeepers’ October Newsletter
In these extraordinary times our Branch has been unable to continue its business as usual. The Committee has maintained regular contact to ensure things go on wherever possible. Whilst many members have been able to continue looking after their bees, some have been unable to do so and help has been provided to relocate colonies and dispose of equipment. Some of the Committee have been safely mentoring fellow beekeepers, particularly new beekeepers from the 2020 course at the beginning of the year. The follow up practical course was cancelled.
The programme of events planned for the remainder of the year has been cancelled but has been replaced by the excellent Zoom presentations organised by the central Cheshire committee. If you have not seen these do have a go, either by interaction on the night or visit the Cheshire website and replay at your leisure.
Weekly inspections have been maintained at the Woodbank Apiary by a small regular team who have been able to keep safe in the spacious area. The honey extraction night involved new beekeepers who were able to operate in a safe environment. The honey yield is lower than previous years but still satisfactory. The bees are being treated for varroa and spare equipment stored away for the winter.
Woodbank apiary September 2020 Susan Payge
Reports of honey yields have varied across the membership. The ability to maintain regular inspections and the variable weather seem to be the main influences. At the time of writing the only event planned for 2021 is the Beginners Course starting in January. This has been carefully organised by Alan Towse in close cooperation with Aquinas College, Stockport.
And finally from myself please stay safe and if you have any questions or suggestions you can send these via the secretary.
Chair, Stockport Beekeepers
Ceramic honey pots
SBKA member Susan Waring makes ceramic honey pots. The glazes used are food safe. Each pot comes with a honey drizzler. Pots will hold approximately 8oz of honey though some of the larger pots will hold 10oz.
At £12 each they make ideal Christmas presents to go with the wonderful honey our bees produce. Contact Susan at: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mobile: 07982 907526
2021 Beekeeping Course
Starting in January at Aquinas College, Stockport, this is now full and applications are closed.
Contact Alan Towse, Education Secretary
Branch honey extractor
Is available from Peter Carefoot on 01457 238664 or email@example.com
Local Honey for sale
As secretary I get many requests for local honey. I respond with a list of beekeepers who have asked for their details to be circulated. If you want to be added to the list of honey sellers please email your contact details to The Secretary
Seventeen members have been involved in the mentoring programme which started at the beginning of this year’s beekeeping season. Some have managed to meet in secure circumstances whilst other have relied on email and phone. I welcome feedback from those involved, and suggestions from the wider membership for a 2021 programme.
Plans for Zoom meetings
Graham Royle has contacted me about arranging branch Zoom meetings and we have decided to give it a go. Many members already subscribe to the successful central Cheshire programme. We do not intend to replicate this presentation programme. Graham and I agree that these meetings should have a clear focus and not become rambling and incoherent. You know what we beekeepers are like with our personal ideas. Graham has suggested we start with a Beekeepers’ Question Time when members can ask questions to a panel of ‘local experts’. If this is successful the programme will be extended to involve notable beekeepers from further afield. There will be some technical support to get set up. More details will follow as we get things rolling.