The British Beekeepers’ Association is thrilled and delighted to celebrate 150 years on Thursday 16th May 2024!  During the year, the BBKA will hang out the flags and ring the bells for bees and beekeepers in multiple ways, with more to come:

A Little 150-Year History
The British Beekeepers’ Association - known as the BBKA - was established as a London-based beekeepers ‘club’ in 1874 and within a decade had evolved into a national organisation. By 1943, Ireland, Scotland and Wales had developed their own Associations, while the BBKA represented beekeepers in England and Northern Ireland. After many years with no fixed abode, in 1982 the BBKA moved to offices at Stoneleigh in Warwickshire. Today, the BBKA represents around 30,000 beekeepers across the country, and works to support education around honey bees, while actively campaigning to raise awareness of threats to pollinators.

Further information including a timeline can be found here.

Planting Trees
All member Associations and Branches have the opportunity to plant sesquicentennial trees in their apiaries, funded by the BBKA. Honey bees, bumblebees and many other species depend on trees for food, and the BBKA trees will last well into the future - even another 150 years!

Our Associations have already been busy planting their trees and you can see what they have been planting by following this link.

BBKA Spring Convention
The BBKA Spring Convention, the beekeeper’s annual conference and trade show held every year, will celebrate the 150th birthday with special merchandise, special conference sessions - and even a free 2024 hive tool for attendees (first-come, first served, hurry while stocks last…).


Isle of Man Stamps

In April, the Isle of Man will issue new stamps featuring bees. Designed by Ben Glazier, a BBKA member and beekeeper based in Buckinghamshire, the First Day Cover and presentation pack will include the BBKA 150-year logo. 

Gilbert White's House & Gardens

To celebrate the BBKA’s 150th year, Gilbert White's House & Gardens, an institutional member of the BBKA, has generously offered two-for-one entry to BBKA supporters. In 2022, the House opened its apiary and now offers workshops on beekeeping and sells ‘Gilbert White Honey’ in the gift shop.  

Country Life Article

March 2024 - an interesting online article celebrating the BBKA 150th Anniversary