Beekeeping Taster Courses 25th April — 22nd November 2020

Sat 25 April,  Sat 16 May  or Sat 23 May 2020  — postponed

Introductory one-day courses on the art of beekeeping.  

23 March 2020 update

We’ve taken the difficult decision to temporary close Martineau Gardens to visitors, in line with government advice on Coronavirus (Covid-19). We hope you stay safe and well and we look forward to the time, when we can welcome you back to the tranquility of Martineau Gardens.

Our statement on Covid-19 

If you are already booked onto one of these courses, we are trying to contact you to book you onto new dates. If you are new to this page and would like to register your interest in registering for new course dates,please email Martineau Gardens via [email protected]

About the course

So you think you would like to keep bees? You may have noticed a number of media reports commenting on the current problems facing the honey bee and thought, “What can I do about it?” Well, for one you could come along to one of the one day courses at Martineau Gardens for a non-technical taster. Honey bees need your help! The course will take you through various stages including:-

  • The difference between the three most common striped stinging insects
  • What does it cost
  • Beekeeping organisations, insurance
  • Equipment-  to buy or assemble your own
  • Types of hive
  • Siting hives
  • Tools
  • Clothing
  • The bee colony
  • Life cycle
  • Role of the beekeeper
  • What bees make
  • Pests
  • How to obtain bees
  • Swarms
  • Honey
  • Honey shows
  • Hands on – with live bees! (weather permitting)

Taking place in the grounds of our beautiful community garden, Martineau Gardens, and led by volunteer Beekeeper, Sam Walker (pictured right here).



The one-day course run from 10am – 4pm (approximate finish, it may overrun a little), with a half-hour break for lunch, and cost £60.  Advance booking is essential. You will need to bring a packed lunch (no bananas! – all will be explained on the course) but hot and cold drinks are provided. All protective clothing will be provided, but you will need to bring a pair of wellies which will stop  bees getting up your trouser leg (you won’t need to wear them all day).

To book your place

£60 per place – advance booking and payment is essential. (Vouchers are also available, for a limited time period, if you wish to purchase the course as a gift.)

You can pay by card, cash or cheque. To pay by card, visit us in person or telephone on 0121 440 7430 Monday to Friday 10am until 4pm. Cheques (to the value of £60 and made payable to ‘Martineau Gardens’ can be posted to: Beekeeping Course, Martineau Gardens, 27 Priory Road, Birmingham, B5 7UG with a covering letter stating your preferred date and your contact details (ring ahead to reserve your place).

100% Refunds will be given in the event that the course is cancelled due to insufficient numbers, tutor illness, or other reasons.  If you cancel up to 7 days before the start of the course, we will give you a 50% refund of the course fee provided we can fill your place. We do not accept liability for your travel costs if you have paid fares in advance.


0121 440 7430 or [email protected]

If you want to stay in touch with our plans, you can:

  • Sign up to receive our News and Events email bulletins  – we’ll email you once a month with News from the Gardens. Subscribe here:
  • You can also follow us on Twitter (@martineau27) or like us on Facebook (Martineau Gardens).

Photocredit: Sam Walker by L Smith