The founder of Shorefield Holidays, Dr Robert Pollock, was an avid beekeeper who passed this love and skill to the next generation, who are likewise keen to instil the same interest in the following. The company and the honey bee have a long standing history and it seemed obvious to our current crop of beekeepers – Simon Pollock (Managing Director & Chairman) and Ian Colverson (Park Supervisor) – that we should be involved in helping to reverse the terrible decline in the numbers of British bees.
If bee numbers continue to fall, this could destroy the British countryside as important plants would die without the pollination that the bees provide. Fruits, vegetables, plants and flowers could all suffer and we at Shorefield Country Park are proud to be doing our bit to help reverse the decline. After completing a beginner’s course with the New Forest Beekeepers Association (NFBK), in the Spring of 2010 we took delivery of two brand new hives containing around 15,000 bees.
Once their new home was established on the park the bees were left to forage and find sources of pollen and nectar. Weekly inspections took place with the main objectives being to locate the queen and ensure that she was laying eggs and the brood was being reared.
Our first year was a huge success as honey is not expected to be produced this soon, but with the help of Ted Scott from NFBK we extracted 12 jars of deliciously tasty golden honey. Plans are afoot to expand the number of hives and perhaps start selling the honey in our on-site Spar shop.
If you share our interest in keeping bees then details of local courses can be found on the British beekeepers association website. Bee sure to book up early as places go fast!