This popular introduction to the very basics of beekeeping is run once a year by
NBKA to teach would-be beginner beekeepers about the six underpinning aspects of
Sessions start at 10 am and run till 12.30 on six Saturdays from late January to
March. These are held at the Abbey Centre, 10, Overslade Close, East Hunsbury, Northampton
The Beginners’ Course consists of 6 classroom-style teaching sessions covering:
• Bee Biology
• Equipment and How To Use It
• Overwintering and Spring Build-up
• Swarming – Why, and How To Avoid It
• Honeybee Pests and Diseases
The sessions are run by experienced beekeepers, and participants will meet both eager
beginners and “old hands” who are there to support your learning and help answer
In addition to the six classroom-based sessions there are practical sessions once
the weather becomes warm enough to open the hives. These take place in the apiaries
of experienced members of the Association, giving complete beginners the opportunity
to see different set-ups and styles of beekeeping.
In March a hive-building event is available on an optional basis, offering beginners
the opportunity to purchase their first hive, through the Association, and teaching
the first steps in building the boxes and frames that are the basic components of
a bee hive.
The fee covers one year’s membership of NBKA with affiliated membership of the British
Beekeepers Association, disease insurance for up to three hives of bees, public liability
insurance, access to the NBKA’s library, and the opportunity to attend events and
a wide variety of talks organized by the Association. Beginners also receive the
Association Beginners’ Handbook which supports the taught classes.
A final session is run at the end of July to assist the new beekeepers in preparing
their bees for the autumn and winter, and to answer questions that have arisen over
the first summer’s beekeeping.
Those interested in signing up for the course will need to contact the Training Officer
once the course dates are published in September 2018.