Friday, 25 September 2015

The Essex Honey Show - 2015

Cameraman and compare, Brian Spence, Chelmsford Division of Essex Beekeepers takes us on a tour of the Essex Honey Show that was at the recent Essex Country Show on 12 and 13 September 2015, at Barleylands, Billericay.

The 29th annual Essex Country Show saw 30,000 visitors descend on Barleylands near Billericay over the weekend to soak up the atmosphere and even some welcome sunshine! Held on Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th September the event, which has grown considerably in size from its original roots as a handful of family and friends, was a great success.

There really was something for everyone with show highlights including colourful jousting by Knights of the Damned, freestyle motorbike displays from Britain’s Got Talent runners up Bolddog Lings and some family friendly frozen sing-a-longs with the Snow Sisters.
As always visitors were given a taste of farming history including working heavy horses as well as seeing the most modern machinery available today. There were plenty of animal displays, steam engines, model engines, classic cars, vintage vehicles, craft demonstrations, fairground rides, trade stands and a food hall packed with treats.

The Essex Country Show Chairman, Andrew Philpot said: 

“We’re pleased to say that feedback from the show this year has once again been very encouraging, We work hard to get a balance of attractions for all ages across a range of interests and we hope we managed to accomplish that. We’re already looking forward to next year’s show which will be extra special as it’s our 30th Anniversary year.”
With two main arenas, each with a variety of shows, there was always something fascinating to watch, be it the Mid Essex Newfoundlands, Imperial Birds of Prey flying displays, the Grand Parade, magnificent motorcycles or tractors. 

Other events including the Tractor Pulling Finals, beekeeping demonstrations, model boat racing, sheep shearing, Lamb National sheep racing and Have A Go Dog Agility. As always trophies were awarded to exhibitors in a number of categories including best Steam Model, Vintage Tractor, and Best Working Pair of horses to name just a few.

Come to next year's show on

Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 September 2016

Essex Beekeepers will be there.

Thursday, 17 September 2015

EBKA Conference 2015 - 31 October - 9.45am-4.30pm

Saturday 31 October 2015
9.45am - 4.30pm

To purchase a ticket please contact:

Keith Lomax

M: 07882 132119
A:  47 West Ley
      Burnham on Crouch
      CM0 8LH

Tickets can be paid for by cheque or BACS transfer.

Cheques should be made payable to

Dengie & Maldon Beekeepers

BACS transfers:

Please contact Keith direct

All tickets are electronically generated - if you require a hard copy, please send an Stamped addressed envelope to Keith at the above address.

We very much look forward to welcoming you at this year's EBKA Conference.

Keynote Speakers

Professor Francis Ratnieks – Sussex University

Francis Ratnieks has been studying insects since he was a boy, and honey bees for the past 30 years. He took his PhD at Dyce Laboratory for Honey Bee Studies in the Department of Entomology at Cornell University. He has kept up to 180 bee hives of his own, making comb honey, rearing queens for sale, and pollinating almonds. He has studied honeybees on all continents other than Antarctica. He has supervised 20 PhD students. He is the UK's only Professor of Apiculture and he is author of 250 scientific research articles.

Keynote Presentation:
The Sussex Plan for Honey Bee Health & Well Being
What we have learned to help honeybees and beekeeping.

At the EBKA 2015 Annual Conference, Professor Ratnieks will describe "Sussex Plan" research aimed at helping honey bee health and foraging. In terms of honeybee health, he will present results of a series of projects on the effectiveness of hygienic behaviour in controlling Varroa mites and Deformed Wing Virus, and also on the effectiveness of other control methods against Varroa. In terms of foraging, Professional Ratnieks will describe results of a series of projects that have decoded honeybee waggle dances to understand where the bees are foraging and at what distances, as well projects that have compared the attractiveness of different flower varieties for honey bees and other flower-visiting insects.

Professor Lin Field – Rothamsted Research

Lin Field, currently a Head of Department at Rothamsted Research has published more than 200 peer-reviewed papers and popular articles as well obtained funding for, and supervised, many science projects, including 15 PhD studentships since her early days as technician.  As Honorary Chair at the University of Nottingham and a President of the Royal Entomological Society Lin is conversant with the insect world, including the honeybee.  Her personal research interests are focussed on understanding an insecticide mode of action and resistance at the biochemical/molecular level and then using this knowledge to develop better pest control strategies. 

Keynote Presentation:
Why do we use insecticides and what are the threats for bees?

In this presentation at the 2015 EBKA Conference, Professor Field will discuss why we use insecticides and what we know about how they work. She will particularly explain what determines toxicity and why some chemicals are very specific for insects and indeed why some are specific for just some kinds of insects. This will include the effect of different compounds on bees and on the varroa mites that threaten bee colonies. The debate on one group of insecticides, the neonicotinoids, is ongoing and Professor Field hopes to be able to give an update on the position at the time of the conference. She will also talk about some of the work she is doing at Rothamsted to try to help find compounds, which offer good pest control without damaging bees.