A new natural beekeeping group in Peterborough

I thought I would broadcast the formation of our new Top Bar group, the Peterborough Area Top Bar Beekeepers. We have eight members so far, and we are keen to attract fellow natural Beekeepers to our small band so that we can provide the support and camaraderie necessary to make this fascinating craft, hobby, environmental project, spiritual celebration or whatever else you wish to call it easier. Yesterday we set up a small stall in Central Park, Peterborough to explain what we were doing, in preparation for our joint stall with a local member of the Natural Beekeeping Trust at the Green Festival on 25th May in Cathedral Square, bang in the centre of the city.

It was a pleasant sunny morning, and our hopes were up that a good number of visitors would come to the stall. Sadly the weather turned cold and wet, so the afternoon was quiet. Nevertheless, we enjoyed this first outing and we are looking forward to the more central event in a fortnight. On the upside, we were donated a large number of packets of wildflower seeds as giveaways for our next event, which was extremely generous.

I was just wondering if anyone had text for a leaflet I could “borrow with pride” and badge as our own? I’ve copies of Friends of the Bees leaflet, and Phil Chandler kindly agreed to let me use a couple of his information leaflets, but I would now like to have one for our own group, pitched at the potential new member or supporter.

One more plea, if you are on facebook, please come to our page and like us or share it with others. We could do with some more online chums!

Peterborough Area Top Bar Beekeepers
Facebook: peterboroughareatopbarbeekeepers
Email: peterboroughtopbarbees@gmx.com

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8 Responses to A new natural beekeeping group in Peterborough

  1. salp111 says:

    Great news! The natural way is spreading. I have a leaflet which is about helping the bees (& other pollinators) but isn’t really an advert for a group necessarily, although you could slip the name & blog (if you have one) of your group in there as one that advocates natural practice.
    if you’re interested, let me know on this blog rather than facebook & I will send a pdf to you for perusal.

    • andysrandommusings says:

      Hi Sal,

      Many thanks for the offer, I’d be delighted to use the text of your leaflet and adapt it with our contact details. A the best. Andy.

  2. salp111 says:

    Hi Andy
    I have your email address from previous message so when I get my computer that has the document stored in it (at the IT doctor at the moment) I will send it to you. Hopefully tomorrow.

  3. Margie says:


    I’m in Peterborough Cambridgeshire UK.

    I am a trustee of The Natural Beekeeping Trust and am pleased to say I have met Andy who has started a top bar group in the area, so I am no longer Margie-no-mates of Peterborough!!

    Andys’ group and I are joining forces on Sat 25th May 2013 to show our presence at the Peterboroughs Green Festival outside the Town Hall.

    I will be showing a Sun Hive, ( as featured on Countryfile ) and a Warre hive, Andy will be showing a Top Bar hive.

    Please come along and meet us, chat, support us and share the day. We look forward to meeting you.

  4. salp111 says:

    Andy. I have sent leaflet to the address @gmx.com. Hope it’s ok
    Good luck with your natural beeking , it’s good to hear it spreading in the East. Norfolk/Cambs is where I hail from & know what you are up against! All that wide open space, monocropping, sprays et al…it isn’t exactly eutopia for insects, but hopefully you are on the west of Peterborough & not so much on the Eastside where all the big farms are. I noticed acres of rape growing, on my last visit which although lovely to look at is a bit like the apple in Snow White. Sugar beet too.
    By the way, does anyone know when the “ban” begins (neonics) as this years crop had already gone in when the decision was made?
    I am wondering how it’s going to work. Where is the farmer going to get next years “clean” rape seed from, I wonder? Is it going to be “clean” in fact or are they to use this years seed …as many of the farmers do…which is anything but “clean”?
    If they have to buy in fresh seed, who is to pay for it? No doubt it will be more expensive as I don’t know of any seed that isn’t either organic or neonic-coated.
    How will it be monitored…if at all?
    How are we going to see any difference in 2 years if the neonic is in the soil from this years crop which will be affecting next years crop? I thought the stuff had rather a long life in the soil, even without ploughing back in the plant residue.
    Without being too negative, after all, the temporary ban is a step forward,it has raised more questions for me than before!
    i would be grateful for some good news on that front. Maybe there’s an agenda that I don’t know about or understand?
    To end on a good note, it has been good to see the bees flying even in this daft weather. They’re a tough little insect…or perhaps it’s desperation!!!
    May the sun shine on your hives & the flowers bloom in your garden 🙂

    • andysrandommusings says:

      An interesting conundrum, Sal, regarding OSR. Some of our fellow top bar folk are slap bang in the middle of OSR to the North of the City, and have good heavy frames full, although the OSR is about 6 weeks late and, according to one big farmer, not much of a crop this year. I shall have to have a chat with one of my local ward councillors about the neonic ban as his firm supplies OSR seed locally. I do wonder how effective the two year ban will be considering the persistence of neonics in the soil and the fact that any wheat or bare will still get treated with the stuff. Mind you, with the sudden return to wet and wintry weather I wonder how our colonies will do this year.

      Luckily I am bang in the centre of town and my colonies forage on the green spaces around here rather than farm crops. My colony in The Green Backyard, a community garden, have a cosseted existence too. We are hoping to set up an out apiary as an education and breeding centre, and have looked at some local trust land around here, but surrounded by neonic soaked crops. I am hoping we can find a brownfield site around the railway with high fences that will fit the bill.



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