Beekeeping Policy

(issued 2016, updated 2024)

The Society recognises the importance of bees for pollination and permits and encourages beekeeping on the allotment site, subject to the points set out below:

  1. Permission must be obtained from the Management Committee before any individual may begin to keep bees on site. The Committee will consult with at least one representative of the existing Beekeeper group before approval is given.
  2. The Management Committee shall decide whereabouts on the site bees are kept and the maximum number of colonies permitted at each location. No more than 30 colonies may be kept on site as a whole, this figure not to be exceeded except with the agreement of a majority of existing beekeepers and with express approval of the Management Committee.
  3. Each hive or apiary (group of hives) shall be surrounded on all sides by a bee-proof barrier of netting or other suitable material which shall be at least two metres high and so constructed and maintained that bees fly in and out above head height over adjoining plots at all times.
  4. Each hive or apiary shall display Beekeeper contact details and the details of a reserve beekeeper.
  5. Each hive or apiary shall be provided with a suitable supply of water for the bees therein and the beekeeper shall ensure that this is maintained throughout the season when the bees are flying.
  6. All beekeepers will cooperate fully with inspectors appointed by DEFRA or any other central or local government body.
  7. All beekeepers shall be current members of a British Bee Keepers Association (BBKA) affiliated branch, such membership to include comprehensive insurance covering all risks associated with beekeeping activity.
  8. The Society insists that new beekeepers or those with limited experience provide documentary proof of their attendance at a beekeeping theory course before being allowed to keep bees on the site. The Society encourages all beekeepers to take appropriate BBKA examinations and ensure that their knowledge of threats and developments is kept current and to register their hives with the National Bee Unit (NBU) on Beebase.
  9. Beekeepers will when requested re-queen any colony which is considered to be aggressive towards neighbouring plotholders or which is producing “following” bees.
  10. Beekeepers will manage their bees so as to minimise swarming and agree that they will capture any swarm arising on site regardless of its origin.
  11. No honey is to be sold on site except through the Society’s Distribution centre.

Issued by Spa Hill Allotment Society Ltd in consultation with existing Beekeepers January 2024.