The Club needs your help to move the Apiary

The club met with the National Trust (NT) at Shugborough on the October 6th 2021. Present were: Hayley Mival, General Manager NT, Helen Royall, Project Manager NT, Caroline Beacall, Head Gardener NT, Alan Greenman, Ed Bennett, Claire George and Jo Berriman.

It was a good positive meeting with the NT where they outlined their Shugborough Estate plan for the next five years.

They said that the south walled garden adjacent to the apiary needs extensive repairs to the wall, requiring scaffolding to be erected.

As this is planned to start early to mid November 2021 the NT asked us to move the hives away from the the wall.

As the rest of the planned site changes will also affect the apiary. Helen Royall the NT Project Manager suggested that we should consider relocating the apiary for the duration of the scheme. After discussing the options it was agreed to re-locate the apiary to the Kennels.

This will meet the club needs for the next 2-3 years when the apiary will move back to its present site with much improved facilities and storage.

Moving the apiary will be a big challenge for us. With your help we plan to do this work over the next few weeks. We will then be ready to run the apiary in its proposed new location for the next two years.
See below for the proposed schedule of work needed to re-locate the apiary to the paddock area on the Kennels site.

Your help with this will be very much appreciated. We will email the latest information on working party dates and times. Keeping the apiary fit for purpose and safeguarding the bees is very important. Please come along and help us over the next three weekends
starting on 23/24th October and continuing as needed on the 30/31st October and 6/7th November.

Remember to bring appropriate outdoor wear including gloves and boots and PPE with you along with the usual garden tools.

We will be clearing the ground, cutting down trees, trimming hedges and moving equipment, the marquee and our newly purchased shed. A lot of work for us to do in a very short time.

The Paddock – now!

Shugborough Apiary re-location plan October – November

Week 1

Saturday 23rd

• Box up container equipment & store in marquee
• Equipment regarded as not essential to be taken to Sure Store
• The Kennels car port to be cleaned & the roof growth to be removed
• Foliage surrounding car port area to be cut back
• Hardstanding to be cleaned or jet washed
• Work to start on clearing main paddock area, members bring the necessary equipment with them
• Cut back the identified trees to stump level where directed
• Close up & prepare the 5 hives & Nucs for temporary re-siting at The Lodge

Please see additional information within, notes below from our joint meeting with the National Trust on October 6th 2021

Sunday 24th

• Clive has kindly offered the use of one of his trailers to transport hives & Nucs to The Lodge
• If car port is cleared transport equipment from new shed over to The Kennels
• Transport generator & lawn mower to The Kennels
• Continue to transport equipment from stores to car port at The Kennels or utilise marquee as a holding bay
• Dismantle new shed and transport to The Kennels
• Bonfire to burn rubbish

Week 2

Saturday 30th

Shed to be moved and re-erected at The Kennels

• Pick up and continue with any outstanding tasks not completed
• Dayna has kindly offered the services of ‘Big Bertha’ (large rotary mower) to continue with paddock clearing
• Erect new shed
• Lift & transport redundant concrete slabs from existing apiary to The Kennels
• Identify where hives are going to be sited at The Kennels and lay slabs
• Empty old shed and dismantle for burning
• Bonfire

Sunday 31st

• Pick up and continue with any outstanding tasks not completed
• Remove & bag base & grit from former location of new shed
• Bonfire

Week 3 – November

Saturday 6th

• Pick up and continue with any outstanding tasks not completed
• Contents of dirty store to be transported to The Kennels
• Close up hives at The Lodge ready to transport to The Kennels on Sunday
• Close up & prepare remaining hives at “old” apiary site ready to transport to The Lodge on Sunday

Sunday 7th

• Transport hives from The Lodge to The Kennels
• Transport hives from “old” apiary to The Lodge
• Task mop up
• Remove metal Harris fences (clean and dirty stores) & transport to The Kennels
• Remove remaining redundant slabs and transport to The Kennels
• Final tidy up and Bonfire

Notes from our joint meeting with the National Trust on October 6th 2021

The Vision for the Shugborough Estate Project:
• It was stated that the club apiary is an integral part of the Shugborough estate and the Walled Garden and that South Staffordshire and District Beekeeping Association has a future at Shugborough

Project:
• Overview of the new car park, infrastructure changes and the Walled Garden project shared

Project time frames – the wall project:
• Scaffold being put up end of October / early November with the Walled Garden Apiary site being set up last of all (likely to be early November). Scaffold needs 4 metres of clearance from wall base

Apiary long term needs & wants:
• Outdoor facilities – water and electric and toilet facilities close to apiary
• Indoor facilities – room for training and meeting, away from apiary, changing, toilet and kitchen facilities
Agreed that the vision for the Plant Centre would work (will include shower facilities).
• Storage – secure, lockable, undercover, some of which needs to be in close proximity to the apiary, a lean-to style shed to be sited in a location along the wall within the apiary, design and final location to be confirmed
• Training site with potential for several hives open at once must be closed to public
• Access – level open area with vehicular and easy access. Good and convenient car parking
• Location – current aspect is ideal (in Walled Garden area) and will work in the future
• Interpretation – to be included in future designs.
• Apiary to be presentable.
• As many mature trees as possible to be retained for the bees and more mature orchard tree planting for size variation.
• Boundary line – park railings with a hedge mix e.g. hawthorn, field maple, holly mix

Apiary – temporary location:
• The choice of temporary apiary locations was discussed and confirmed as the paddock area at the Kennels
• The needs and wants of the club during this time period were agreed
• The outdoor spaces at the Kennels were agreed on as the temporary location for the apiary

Additional information:
• The Kennels Cottage is not available for use.
• The club has no access to the sheds, garage or cottage garden (within the walls and shown in red on the map above)
• There needs to be clear access at all times in front of the cottage, along the track to the cottage, to the double gates into the productive garden, apiary paddock and glasshouse complex (shown in yellow on the map)
• Areas defined on the map for storage are shown in purple, parking (blue) and apiary (green)
• The temporary site at the Kennels will only be available as a location for the club apiary whilst the walled garden undergoes repairs to the walls and while the infrastructure project associated with the car park and Walled Garden is completed
• Following the completion of these infrastructure and wall projects, the club apiary will return to the Walled Garden area
• National Trust agreed to provide water, electricity, outside lighting and ‘portaloo’ for the club within the designated apiary area
• Locations identified for the bee hives and car parking with hardstanding earmarked for the marquee and storage shed

License:
It was agreed that the current license would be extended to 2 years to cover the move of the apiary to the temporary site at the Kennels paddock area pending a review on when it can return to the walled garden area in October 2023.

Practical considerations:
• Transport required for moving hives. shed and equipment from existing apiary to new location
• Clearing and preparation of the Kennels area before the apiary can move in
• Dismantle old apiary and remove container