|7th Oct||Val Francis- “Help, I can’t find the Queen”|
|4th Nov||Gerry Collins – Solitary Bees, Social insects and Wasps|
|2nd Dec||Christmas Social|
|6th Jan||No Meeting|
|3rd Feb||Jim Pearson- Queen Rearing Methods Other Than Grafting|
|2nd Mar||Mark Millard- What to do with Wax|
|6th April||Charles Austin- Large Scale Beekeeping|
Val is chair of Barnsley Beekeeping Association and a seasoned beekeeper. Along with her husband Garry, Val has kept bees for many years. Val is also the BBKA's Examinations Board Secretary.
Started beekeeping in 1958 at the age of 11 years (as junior member of Hagley and Stourbridge branch of Worcestershire BKA) passed BBKA preliminary (now called “the Basic”) in 1959. Today a BBKA Master Beekeeper, Senior honey judge and Holder of the National Diploma in Beekeeping. Served in various capacities at local county and National level. Currently President of Doncaster BKA and on 4th chairmanship of the BBKA exam board. Was the BBKA correspondence course secretary for 18 years. Examiner for every BBKA examination and Yorkshire regional and General Husbandry trainer. Played a major role in the introduction of BBKA modular exams (writing six of the original module syllabi) setting and marked several module papers. Spent most of my working life in Yorkshire lecturing in Biology at Doncaster College retiring in 2007 to spend more time with my 25 colonies & to take even more photos to add to my large collection of images on all aspects of bees and beekeeping. Many of these photos have used by others to illustrate the new BBKA courses in a case, BBKA leaflets, beekeeping books and articles.
Jim Pearson is a member of the Wakefield and Pontefract branch of the Yorkshire BKA. He is a practical beekeeper who applies science where required and where he sees the relevance to his beekeeping. As a progressive beekeeper he is always trying to understand bees more and in doing so he has discovered that some of what has become standard information is not always correct. A keen enthusiast of native and near native bees, he manages around 30 colonies with his brother Geoff, one apiary being in the foothills of the Pennines 800 ft above sea level. Jim is a Master Beekeeper who is an assessor for BBKA Basic, General Husbandry and Microscopy assessments.
Mark Millard is a BBKA Qualified beekeeper, (which means he’s passed the General Husbandry assessment and has passed 4 Module exams). Mark is also secretary for Wakefield and Pontefract Beekeepers.
Our very own Charles Austin is an engaging and experienced beekeeper with 30 plus years of beekeeping experience. He runs around 150 colonies and is also our Winter Apiary Manager. Charles is an fan of Keld Brandstrup’s gentle Buckfast Danish bees. Charles is also a keen scuba diver.