Category Archives: Bees


Slow Food Blitz Bee Action



Save the bees

British bees are in danger. Three species of bees are already extinct and others are in rapid decline. Strong evidence points to particular pesticides being to blame for killing them. [1] This week we have a chance to persuade the government to protect our bees and ban these harmful pesticides.

A government consultation on pesticide use ends next Monday. [2] Normally the only people they would hear from would be the strong pesticide industry. But by handing in a large petition, we can make sure that the bees have someone to stand up for them.

Can you sign a petition now to demand the government phase out the pesticides that are killing our bees?

France and several other European countries have already started banning these pesticides, but the UK government is yet to be convinced. [3] Together, by responding in our thousands, we can send a strong message to the government and counter the lobbying from the pesticide industry.

Last week thousands of 38 Degrees members responded to a poll on what we should be concentrating on together. Over 70% of responses highlighted that protecting bees was an important issue. [4] This week is our chance to do something about it.

Sign the petition now and help save our bees:

Thanks for being involved,

Robin, Belinda, David and the 38 Degrees Team

[1] Friends Of the Earth – Bee Cause:
[2] The government DEFRA consultation:
[3] The Independent: European and American reports say nerve agents may be a danger, but the UK goes on using them:
[4] Link to blog post with poll results:

FREE Plan Bee iPhone game + campaign successes!

Email exchange

Dear Nessa thanks for your detailed email. Certainly we would be happy to let TTSN members know about your project which I know from the odd visit is a lovely place to sit and contemplate.

You could send your notices etc to both Sue and I and we will see that they get publicised.

On a personal note I am away for a couple of weeks but when I get back I am sure that Lin and I will make time to come down and meet you all. I have added you to our mailing list so that you also hear about events this end of Dorset,hope thats ok,

Best Wishes, vince

———- Forwarded message ———-

From: Nessa Hickish <>

Date: 25 July 2011 22:48

Subject: RE: TTSN Forage Party + Cooking on Thurs. evening + Blandford Museum Bees (Useful Info from Alex today)


Hi Vince – I am Nessa Hickish the Chairman of the Victorian Kitchen Garden Club and we are most interested in your organisation too. Yes, we do operate on a Sat/Sun alternate morning – in the summer from 9.30 and the winter 10 a.m.

The times are always up in the passage way leading down to Bere’s Yard. We are quite a happy old band with a handful of younger ones thrown in to add a bit of zest! It would be of value for us to join up with you as we have lost the BVM museum link so anything that is going on could perhaps be through TTSN. We are intending to run a Quiz night in October and a Potato Day in March – which your bloggers might be interested in.

We do grow Heritage crops mostly seed bought from Pennards (the potato day people) of Somerset. We are still i nthe process of developing the garden and constructing the framework of it. The next big item is a substantially built storage/display stable. We have a rough plan. We are intending the end walls to be made of cob – a taught class where we shall learn how to make our own ‘bricks.’

In 3 seasons we have come a long way – we still have a long way to go, but that is the nature of gardening – no instant fix!

Hopefully we shall see you in the garden sometime soon. John has been a good linking person since he has become a member. He spends a lot of time in the garden and is keen to learn.

The bees have been a recent introduction and we are seeing how they/we get along together. Hopefull they will stay as they are so beneficial to us. Alex Cooper looks after them and is also extremely dedicated to his work.

Heather is our Head Gardener and Elaine is our most able secretary; Sylvia links us to the museum/education spokesperson and is our ‘grant specialist’. We have a great team of blinking hard working and dedicated members.

That’s us – regards Nessa Hickish

Date: Sun, 24 Jul 2011 09:26:00 +0100

Subject: Re: TTSN Forage Party + Cooking on Thurs. evening + Blandford Museum Bees (Useful Info from Alex today)




Hallo John,

the weeding followed by the forage was great fun. Probably a dozen people walked with Lucie and she is a really knowledgeable girl.

Its not the best time of year to find what one might call substantial food but we certainly had plenty of leaves etc to add to salads for nutrition and flavour.The cooking was good but needed a little more thought, next time we shall be better prepared. Maybe for an Autumn event…hope you will come.Also next time we might follow up with a short info email that covers everything that we saw, I shall discuss with nLucie what we can do.

Can I ask a bit about your Sat-Sun morning events in your garden project ? If you let me know more I shall get it posted on the TTSN website and circularise the details.

I am away for a couple of weeks but when I get back I should like to come over,

Best Wishes, vince

By the way would you and your friends like to subscribe to our TTSN blog it does circ lots of info and ideas ?

On 22 July 2011 16:23, John Barclay <> wrote:

Hello Vince,

Glad to hear about your forage – how was the cooking?! – and for interest, how many people?

Our event tomorrow morning is just our regular weekend work session in the garden (09.30 – 12.00 or so), which falls on Sat. this week – alternate Sats and Suns, so the following one will be Sun. 31st.

When we have a date for the session on the bees, shall I let you know? .. any of your members always welcome to whatever we do, of course.

Best wishes – John

On 22/07/2011 08:12, vince adams wrote:

Hallo, the weather ewas ok last night and we had an interesting forage, good fun !!

Tell me what is the event in the Museum Garden tommorrow ?

Sounds interesting,

regards, vince

On 21 July 2011 02:50, John Barclay <> wrote:

Hello everyone,

First of all, I thought some of you might be interested in the forage and cooking event in Child Okeford this evening – details below – tho the met office forecast for that area seems to be a lot wetter than Blandford’s for this evening! (Whatever the weather, I won’t be free to come to Gold Hill myself, unfortunately.)

Secondly, concerning our bees at the Museum Garden, I had a very interesting and positive 45 mins with Alex there yesterday (Wednesday), and he’s doing his best to address all our concerns (about aggressive behaviour of a few bees when we work near the hives, and about giving us more information) – tho he couldn’t do anything with the hives yesterday, due to the rain. Drier weather today should help.

If I’ve understood correctly, his immediate action will be to remove about 2/3 of the bees in the more active hive (on the left) and give the remaining bees more space by adding an empty section – as well as removing the 60lb or so of honey they’ve made since he added on those extra sections at the top of each hive. (Those sections were only to provide space for honeycomb – nothing to do with adding more bees!) There will also be 20 or 30lb to take from the other hive. The aggression may have come from their having so much honey to defend.

Depending on the weather, step two should be possible from next Tuesday (26 July), when Alex will have new Queens available, bred from a Danish strain with a calmer temperament ! .. He will then work his way thru our hives, find and remove the 2 existing queens and ‘re-queen the hives’ … From then on, things should gradually improve, as the existing bees die off and the newly hatched ones replace them. The reduced overcrowding should also help …

Information Session for everyone interested

Alex will suggest some possible dates for this – maybe as soon as next week.

Bring along your questions and they will be answered !!

Many thanks to Alex … hope to see some of you in the Garden on Saturday.

Best wishes – John

On 20/07/2011 14:46, vince adams wrote:

Transition Town Sturminster Newton Event

SOS Reminder

6.30pm tomorrow Lucie is leading a Forage at Gold Hill Organic Farm after the Weeding Party.

[ which is weekly every Thurs. at 5pm, for those who don’t know – “GREAT COMPANY, FRESH AIR AND A BAG OF WONDERFUL VEGGIES FOR THE WEEKEND” ]

Try and get along and stay for whatever we find being cooked afterwards.

Bring Family and friends it should be fun regardless of the weather !!

Vince Adams

Follow me on Twitter @TTSNVince
Mobile 07887942888
Home 01258473135

Photos from Jon’s bee walk on 30th April

Please click link below to see photos

Bee walk photos

Advance Notice Transition News……….a day to keep your diary clear.

Saturday 16th April is building up to be quite a day for TTSN so if you can make any of the events do please come along.

Make do and Mend

In the morning we shall be having our Stall at Make Do and Mend 10.00am in the Exchange. Remember any items you have that you wish to pass on, re-cycle would add to our collection.

Bee Walk

Then 2.00pm Jon will be leading a BEE walk around Gold Hill Farm to outline his plans for our BEE project. Its a great place to walk anytime under the stare of Hambledon Hill. But now its all about what TTSN and GHF will be doing to help the natural bee populations. You can have your lunch there or afternoon tea in the Cake Tim Cafe.

OOOBY (out of our own back yards)

Then at 4.00pm we shall be having our first ever get together in Stur at Jon’s OOOBY. Jon has agreed to work closely with TTSN to create a real community garden, gathering place, vegetable garden and whatever we all want. This is a great opportunity to give TTSN a real sense of community and presence. Helping to develop the idea will be exciting and I urge everyone to come along to see what is there and what might be possible.

The plot is near the Stur end of the trailway so why not  park your car in Stur, walk or cycle over to Gold Hill Farm and then back to Stur. Full location details will be put on the website  nearer the day.

By the way its all free, pack a picnic get the kids bikes out and come and have some fun and begin to make a difference to the life of Stur and its Villages.

Don’t forget to subscribe to the website newsletter, it will ensure that you get up to the minute news about things that directly affect us all.

Thankyou Hinton and Sturminster Cricket Club from the Bees

The most amazing display of Common Hawksweed has sprung up on the Cricket Ground in Hinton St Mary. Our thanks to the hard working groundsman who has allowed this carpet of colour to show itself over the past few days.

Why not take a walk up through the Village, look at the wildflowers, maybe take a piccie or two and retire to the White Horse Inn for a well earned drink.

Mid morning the bees from all around can be found feasting on the flowers and its forage like this that is so important in helping bees to thrive throughout the long Summer.

Let some patches of clover grow in your lawn it will soon be invaded by grateful bees.

For information on how you can help the bee post your questions or thoughts even on this website or email