With great sadness I have to announce the death of Ronald A Hoskins (Ron) on 2 July 2023.

A pioneer Master Beekeeper who was known across the world for his work on not only trying to teach the British but also Swiss Scientific Beekeepers about treatment free beekeeping (how it isn’t necessary to use chemicals to fight the influx of the Varroa Mite
but by letting the bees do it themselves).

He travelled to other countries as far away as Australia, New Zealand & Norway working with various scientists. It is regretful that Ron received very limited recognition of his life's work from some of those scientists and some other beekeepers who eventually changed their minds and are now using his method of treatment free.

Ron travelled across Britain giving talks on his work for some time hoping that his success in Varroa control would be picked up and used by as many beekeepers as possible without chemical intervention. I had the privilege to work and travel alongside him for some years, and wondered at his determination and dedication, to see his work in helping the bees develop grooming.

In 1995 he found that one of his hives were dislodging the Varroa from other bees within the hive.  He therefore took that queen, who had a genetic trait for producing a grooming bee, and put it into another hive to see if she produced the same results. He found that
the new hive, after some time, produced the same results. He then took the new eggs from her to produce more queens and used artificial insemination to produce what was later named the Swindon Bee.

It was found later by one of the scientists that our bees also had immunity to Damaged Wing Virus, a virus that we had never seen before. All this from Ron's life time work with his beloved Bees.

This is a brief synopsis of the very dedicated Beekeeper that Ron was and he will be missed by Beekeepers around the world and myself.

Eddy Eggleston
Beekeeping Colleague and Friend