Here is my latest video on setting up my new apiary on the Berkshire Downs.
I have made an introductory video on Mr Woodley, and hopefully it justifies to the watcher, why telling Mr Woodley’s story is warranted. So without further ado, please enjoy my video on WW.
The cottager beekeeper of the late nineteenth century was giving-up keeping bees. There were many reasons for this including the fact that making a living as an agricultural labour was becoming a precarious occupation and better prospects lay in the towns and cities working in the factories.
In addition to this, the cottager beekeeper was having difficulties selling their honey. The Berkshire Beekeepers’ Association was trying to arrest the decline the cottage beekeeper, Mr Woodley describes the situation:-
During January I have been ploughing my way through Mr Woodley’s articles in the British Bee Journal from 1889 – 1897. Last night I came across an important clue to the identity of Mr Woodley’s watcher.
As a bit of a recap from earlier blogs, Mr Woodley had two apiaries in the Parish of Beedon. Mr Woodley had one apiary at his home at Worlds End and an out-apiary at Stanmore. Mr Woodley employed a man to watch his bees at Stanmore. This is what the watcher had to do:
“All he has to do is to watch for swarms, hive them into straw skeps, mark the hive the swarm issued from, and carry the bees to the home apiary — about two miles — after swarming is over for the day. For this service I pay 10s. or 12s. per week for the job, wet or fine. If weather is dull and cool, the “watcher” does a little gardening or any other job required to fill up his time.”
[NBTW 3 December 1908]
This is a piece I stumbled on in the British Bee Journal. Mr Woodley responds to a misinformed journalist/correspondent at the Newbury Weekly News. I would be interested to know from my readership, whether the standard and accuracy of journalism at the Newbury Weekly News has improved since 1890?Read More »
Mr Woodley wrote on 24 December 1890 in the British Bee Journal on the subject of Christmas Cards.
“I have seen many times on Christmas cards the old-fashioned straw skep or beehive figuring amongst the illustrations, but never in a single instance the modern frame hive, loaded with snow. On more than one occasion I have wished for a ‘Kodak’ so that I could snap a view of my apiary when the row of hives have been laden with with snow, and have taken friends to see the unique vision of a snow laden apiary. I am sure the view would inspire lovers of the beautiful in Nature with enthusiasm if they could share in the view.”
Mr Woodley in his column in the British Bee Journal called ‘Notes By The Way’ comments on the idea of breeding honeybees with long tongues.Read More »