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Back to blog A Beekeepers Journey – ‘You Will Get Stung!’

A Beekeepers Journey – ‘You Will Get Stung!’

A Beekeepers Journey – ‘You Will Get Stung!’


By Richard Atkins


One of the things I had always planned to do when I retire is to learn how to look after bees. Having worked for 2BScientific Limited, who are passionate about sustainability, by supporting many charities including the British Bee Keeping Association and Bees For Development , it has always driven me more to find out more about this very important sustainable hobby.


Although I am not retired and thoroughly enjoying my role as Chief Commercial Officer at 2BScientific Limited an opportunity arose recently in the village I live in, King Sutton, to volunteer for the Kings Sutton Community Beekeeping Project. This was an idea from the Kings Sutton Parish Council (KSPC) who wanted to implement a long-term sustainability project into the village for future generations, giving the community the opportunity to work together.


In June the KSPC invited volunteers to attend the ‘kick-off’ meeting, 7pm at the village memorial hall. I had shown my interest and walked to the village hall for the 7pm meeting, half expecting to be one of one person to volunteer. When I arrived in the meeting room there were 7 volunteers and 3 parish councillors. The KSPC presented what their thoughts were about the implementation of the project and had done some excellent groundwork, by even attending a taster day at the local Oxfordshire Beekeepers Association. What did I learn from this presentation, well, the KSPC are very passionate about sustainability for our village and the future generations living there, its not cheap to set up bee colonies and that we will ‘All Get Stung!’


The first step will be for the volunteers to nominate a Community Bee Keeping Warden. This seemed to strike ‘fear’ in the volunteers, but once explained, this role is to report to the KSPC on a regular basis on progress, events, costings and required investments. For the next blog I should be able to reveal our new Community Bee Keeping Warden!


What surprised us were the costs to set up a colony of 3 hives. This is due to the equipment required to do this:


Storage Shed (Lockable and secure, Vermin impenetrable)

Smokers x 2

Hives x 3

Supers x 9-12

Beekeeping suits x 3 Adults & x 3 Under 10 years

1 x hive tool

1 x bee brush

Queen bee with colony x 1


Once we have nominated our Bee Keeping Warden the next steps will be to purchase over the next few months all the equipment above, prepare the site for the hives and set up the storage. The KSPC has very kindly agreed to send 3-4 of the volunteers on specific bee keeping training courses which are held by the Oxfordshire Beekeepers Association during January, February and March 2025.


Once this training is completed, we will then purchase our first colony and set up our first hive in the spring of 2025. I will continue with a quarterly blog on progress and ‘I have not yet been stung!’