As well as supporting experienced beekeepers, Newbattle Beekeepers Association (NBA) operates with a strong emphasis on supporting new beekeepers to become certified Scottish Beekeeping Association (SBA) Basic Beekeepers following a full-year training programme of caring for and maintaining an allocated hive.
The NBA launched in the grounds of Newbattle Abbey College (NBAC) in 2013 with the 4 members of the Lamancha Beekeepers Association, established in 2010, and formerly based at Lamancha Organic Farm near West Linton. Through dedication of its initial membership, the NBA has grown to 46 adult members and 6 juniors, and has become a leading Scottish beekeeping association in the field of education for new beekeepers. Participants join through referral, or from having completed the introduction to beekeeping classes sponsored by and held at NBAC, and delivered each year over a 6 weeks' period in late Spring and Autumn.
The one-year learning programme has led to 55 adult members and 6 juniors achieving distinction level passes of the SBA Basic Beekeepers' Exam (BBE) since 2010. In 2015 the first 2 juniors, then aged 10 and 12, were the first juniors in Scotland to achieve certification.
Project Manager, Martin Vevers reports significant progress on both the interior and exterior refurbishment of the Bee Academy building. The windows have been glazed and some of the window security grills have been fitted. The entrance security screen is also in place.
Newly glazed window
Window security grill
Entrance security screen
An internal partition has been constructed making for a more flexible use of the building. Work will start soon on fitting out the kitchen area and laying the new floor surface. Plumbing work started last weekend will resume again on Saturday and work on the electrics will get underway soon.
There was an excellent turnout of members throughout the day to work on the building refurbishment. The main tasks undertaken were the treatment of the exterior timber cladding, washing down the interior walls in preparation for painting, work on fitting pipes for the water supply and fitting pipework for the toilet. In addition a general clean and tidy of the working areas was undertaken.
The weather was dry and the sun was out but it was cold so the homemade soup made by Kimberly & Jubin was very welcome during the lunchtime break.
Significant progress was made throughout the day and what was thought to be two days of work was achieved in one.
A job well done - Members of the Saturday Work-party