AUGNews - Darlington



August 2012

For all newsletter items: Contact Roger on 01325

315741 or e-mail us at :

All articles and photographs, items for sale or wanted are welcome.

COMING EVENTS to be held at Brafferton Village Hall 7.30pm

September 6th :

The new series of winter talks commences with a talk by the wellrespected beekeeper from Whitby BKA, Tony Jefferson, who also represents the YBKA as delegate to the BBKA and who is Vice-Chairman of the YBKA. He will outline his work on Breeding Queens using the 3-section brood box.

October 4

th :

This meeting is being used to launch our HERITAGE LOTTERY-

FUNDED PROJECT and members of the Newcastle-based lottery administration are invited to attend as are all the other organisations which have been hitherto involved in the Project. This will be combined with our first attempt at running a HONEY SHOW .

Sue Proudfoot and Jenny Elleanor have taken on the onerous task of organizing this and also refreshments will be laid on. As this will be the main event for 2012 for the DBKA it is hoped that all members will make a big effort to attend . In addition to the fact that this should be a very entertaining evening we will also be putting on some refreshments and Prizes will be awarded for the best exhibits in the Honey Show which will this year be judged by George Eames of Durham BKA.

Rationale : Thanks to the grant obtained from the Heritage Lottery Fund this year,

Darlington Bee Keepers Association (DBKA) has been able to take a massive leap forward in providing support for Darlington’s Bee Keepers. That lottery funding has enabled the association to purchase equipment that is essential for beekeepers and which will be available to anyone interested in keeping bees in Darlington. The equipment purchased has enabled us to set up an association Apiary at Bellburn allotments – this will provide teaching and research opportunities as well as provide space for new beekeepers to keep their hives. Additionally, microscopes and Queen-breeding equipment acquired will enable the association to develop colonies of bees which will help beekeepers to enjoy the hobby more fully and will enable us to make substantial

contributions to the establishment of the native British black bee so essential to the continued survival of the species in this country. Other equipment purchased for the benefit of members are honey extractors, protective suits, an observation hive, solar wax melters, incubators, computers a Projector and a large presentation screen. All these items will be on show during the evening so come along to see for yourself what a fantastic array of equipment we are acquiring for the use of all members.

The proposed format for the evening is as follows:

7.30pm Roger and Len will outline the progress made by DBKA over the last year with a short presentation using the media equipment purchased.

8pm George Eames will talk about the procedures relating to Honey

Shows and will provide information about how to prepare entries and what you should do to gain 1 st place.



Break, Refreshments and Judging.

Results and Summary.

November 1st



December 4th


Christmas Social & Quiz :

Foresters Arms, Coatham Mundeville (7pm)


Our new 2012/13 Beginners Course is to be held at HURWORTH GRANGE.

Time: 7-9pm. Cost : £30.

Session 1 : Introduction to Beekeeping

Session 2 : Creating an Apiary

Session 3 : The Beekeeping Year

Session 4 : The HONEY BEE

Session 5 : Swarm Control

Mon 1st October 2012

Mon 29th October 2012

Mon 26th November 2012

Mon 7th January 2013

Mon 4th February 2013

Session 6 : Queens, History & Diseases Mon 4th March 2013

If you wish to enroll please contact us by e-mail to :

or telephone : Roger (01325 315741); Len (01325 307712) or Derek (01325 480075).

Early bookings are recommended – places will be limited.


Hurworth Council have confirmed that they are going ahead with their plans to establish apiaries in their grounds at Hurworth and on local allotments. Roger and Len led a delegation from DBKA (which included Derek Lindsay, Roger Bradley, John

Fulton, Wilma Campbell, Nick Bradshaw and Jason Miller) to acquaint the villagers of

Hurworth exactly what is involved in the pursuit of keeping bees. The apiary will consist initially of 5 hives stocked with well-behaved bees and surrounded by protective mesh so that beekeeping techniques can be demonstrated. The aim is to promote ecological issues and to provide an educational resource for local people in conjunction with the local allotments association. It is expected that local people will be involved in training over the next few months which will now be held at Hurworth Grange, with a view to launching the initiative in the Spring of 2013. Jason kindly offered to kick-start the project by volunteering a colony of bees. The discussions were well received and everyone went away from the meeting feeling positive and full of enthusiasm.


This initiative is developing well and great progress has been made over the last few weeks. Thanks are due to Derek Tweedy for his part in setting up this initiative on our behalf and we are very grateful for his advice and hard work. He has liaised with the

Bellburn Allotments committee and DBKA officials well over the last few months and has been an invaluable conduit essential to the success of negotiations. He will take a full role in looking after the apiary (in his capacity as Apiary Manager) and if any member wishes to know more about the facilities available at the apiary they should contact Derek in the first instance on : 01325 253549. Plots will be available for new beekeepers to keep their bees on the site under the tutorage of Derek who will assist and give advice when required. The area has now been rotavated and levelled and a Summer House constructed in one corner (complete with livery). Presently there are 3 hives fully functioning. Malcolm Harding and others have

The “Construction Crew” : A motley bunch ! done a great job organising all the pavers needed and is co-ordinating other jobs which need doing on the site before it can be fully operational. Any volunteers who come forward are welcome and should contact either

Derek or Malcolm (01325 359991).

Outbreak of EFB and AFB

We were disappointed to receive a report from the local bee inspector (Ian

Wallace) regarding a case of European Foulbrood found in Darlington – East. This is naturally a cause of concern and if any member suspects that their colonies have developed worrying symptoms they should, in the first instance, consult our ‘Disease

Liaison Officer’, Stuart Fawcett who will inspect your hives and provide advice. If necessary either Roger, Len or Derk Tweedy may be consulted. Should any doubt exist it is important that all members who suspect their bees may have been affected be aware that these are notifiable diseases and should be reported to the local bee inspector immediately. Stuart will provide further information should you require it. It is important that all members subscribe to B.D.I. and this infection further supports the recommendation made by the committee this year that all members are automatically covered as part of the DBKA subscription. Please be aware, however, that the basic subscription only covers you for the first 3 hives – if you anticipate that you may, in future months, acquire further hives it is important you advise the Secretary/Treasurer on payment of the annual subscription since failure to do so may well result in your cover becoming invalid. Action taken by inspectors to control the spread of EFB and AFB usually involves the destruction of all bees and equipment infected and this could be extremely expensive as well as very upsetting. Make sure you are fully covered.

We received the following e-mails from the seasonal bee inspector, Ian Wallace:

No. 1

I have recently identified a case of European Foul Brood in an apiary in map square NZ31 Darlington East. Given the constraints of confidentiality I am unable to be more specific as to apiary or beekeeper.

Clearly the location of this case will be more relevant to some of you than others but, irrespective of location, it is a timely reminder that, despite our areas historic low levels of both of the Foul Broods, the risk is always present.

Can I ask you all to remind your members of the risk of Foul Brood and to ask them to refresh their memories about what they need to look out for – I recommend they all read the FERA leaflet on Foul Brood.

Follow this link to find out more:

I will be undertaking a sweep of apiary inspections around the outbreak as a matter of priority.

In the meantime if any of your members have concerns about their colonies please encourage them to contact me to discuss their concerns and, if necessary, to arrange an inspection.

Any queries/questions please come back to me.

No. 2


I have been advised that two brand new cedar hives containing nucs have been stolen from a youth project in Hartlepool.

The hives are Thorns Hives - mesh floors galvanised metal roof containing small nucs of bees that have been in only a couple of weeks so mainly on foundation.

Unfortunately it doesn't sound as if any of the kit was marked in any way.

The police have been informed and as the project has only had them for a couple of weeks you can imagine that the workers and kids are devastated by the loss.

You may also wish to suggest to your members with hives in unsecure locations to consider marking their kit. This can be done in a number of ways but the cheapest is to mark their brood frames with their BeeBase registration number and or post code using black marker pen and putting the information on the outside leg of the frames. This is difficult to remove without getting rid of brood and is obvious when the frame is inspected if the colony is resold.

A timely reminder to us all I am afraid.


Ian Wallace,

Seasonal Bee Inspector,

Tel Mobile - 07775 119 445

Home - 01912 521 598

What we anticipate seldom occurs

What we least expect generally happens