Joining Us

Whether you are an experienced beekeeper, a recent starter, or are simply interested to find out more, you will find a warm welcome in Dean Forest Beekeepers. To join Dean Forest Beekeepers please click here.

Probably the most valuable aspect of membership of any beekeeping association is the opportunity to talk to other beekeepers. There is enormous benefit in being able to discuss your questions, problems, ideas and experiences with people who are dealing with the same issues.  Through the monthly indoor meetings and weekly apiary sessions, Dean Forest Beekeepers gives its members plenty of time to meet and talk, and our Facebook page is also available for discussion of any beekeeping topic.

Dean Forest Beekeepers provides the following member benefits:

  • Apiary: From April to September we meet weekly at our association apiary in Lydney.  With 20 hives and experienced beekeepers on hand to explain and advise you have the opportunity to see hives in virtually all stages of development and understand the management options available to you. Apiary sessions are arranged so that hive checks and any necessary changes or treatment are carried out by members in small teams. As well as helping to maintain and develop the apiary, the sessions offer an ideal way to learn by putting theory into practice and carrying out real tasks with help at hand. We have a clubhouse to cover situations when the weather does not let us inspect our bees or just to somewhere to site and enjoy a cup of tea with friends.
  • Training Courses: We run formal training courses for new and more experienced beekeepers. Our previous courses are popular and successful with excellent pass rates for those optionally going on to take BBKA exams.  During the winter we help facilitate study groups for those wishing to learn more about bees and beekeeping or take the BBKA module exams.
  • Winter Lectures and Workshops: During the winter we have monthly indoor meetings where an invited speaker gives a talk or demonstration, followed by ample time for members to meet and talk.
  • Shop: The shop provides basic beekeeping provisions such as feed, frames, foundation at very competitive prices.  We also have a number of honey extractors and related equipment available to hire.
  • Microscopy Lab: Members are able to bring samples of bees and pollen and get help investigating them under the microscope.
  • Library: We have a library with an updated selection of books available for members to borrow.
  • Bee Safaris: Each year we arrange to visit a number of member apiaries with a guest beekeeper who will lead us in an inspection.

We have members of all ages and all levels of experience, so you are sure to find friends who share your particular interests.

There are four classes of membership:

Full membership is suitable for those who keep bees and wish to participate fully in all aspects of Dean Forest Beekeepers. Includes membership of the BBKA with associated benefits.

Partner Membership provides all the benefits of full membership excluding the BBKA News magazine and insurance provided by the BBKA.

Junior membership provides all the benefits of full membership.

Social membership allows full participation in all aspects of Dean Forest Beekeepers but excludes all BBKA membership benefits.

To join Dean Forest Beekeepers please click here.

GBKA and BBKA membership

Members of Dean Forest Beekeepers are automatically members of Gloucestershire Beekeepers Association, of which we are a Branch, and all except Social members are also members of the British Beekeepers Association (BBKA).

The BBKA represent and support beekeepers in many ways, and organise a National Convention each spring. Members can attend meetings of any of the seven branches in the Gloucestershire Association. Your membership provides the following two types of insurance:

  • Public Liability Insurance: Click here for details
  • Bee Diseases Insurance: Compensates you if your hives have to be destroyed because of American or European Foul Brood. Standard cover is for up to 3 hives but additional hives can be covered for an extra fee.  Click here for further details.