Romsey and District Beekeepers' Association

Our Beginners' Course

Our course offers a "multi-media" approach that covers all the basics and more.

It consists of 12 theory sessions delivered online, allowing participants to choose their own quiet time to watch. We also offer Zoom chats for questions and discussion. Our beginners find this flexible approach helpful because everyone has other commitments.

Each beginner receives a folder packed with useful reference material and tips, and a few other bits and pieces to support their learning.

Most importantly, the course includes a practical day to meet in person for a spot of revision, some practical work and the essential visit to the bees (always a highlight!).

We continue to support our beginners when they come to setting up their first apiary or taking their first colony.

Topics included

As well as the full day at Awbridge Village Hall for handling bees and a spot of practical work, our beginners' course includes:

  • The bees' nest - types of hive and how to choose
  • Setting up an apiary - finding a site that's good for bees and safe for those close to it
  • Stings - how to avoid them and what to do if it happens
  • The honey bee colony - what's happening inside the hive
  • Swarming - how to use it to the bees' and your advantage
  • Pests and diseases - health issues for bees
  • Bees, plants and hive products - forage, honey and wax
  • Routine inspections - why and how to check your bees
  • The beekeeping year - winter, spring, summer and autumn
  • Simple honey extraction - how to know whether the bees can spare some honey, and what to do with it
  • Getting started - putting it all into practice

Beekeeping is a fascinating and rewarding hobby.

If you are interested in keeping bees, we strongly recommend that you enrol on a beginners' course that covers the essentials and includes practical experience of handling bees before acquiring bees or buying equipment.

If you would like to enrol on our 2022 course or have any queries, please email gillian.j.bird@btinternet.com

If you are undecided about becoming a beekeeper but would like to know more, please consider our taster day.


Our 'taster day' is ideal for those who want to know more about bees but are not ready to commit to taking on a colony. The morning sessions cover theory and the afternoon - weather permitting - a visit to the bees.

A taster day makes an excellent gift.
If you would like to find out more about the 2022 taster day, please CLICK HERE.