Beekeeping on Allotments

Want to keep bees but don’t have time.  Then a Beekeeper can run your hive for you.  Contact for more details.

Beekeeping on Allotments  is a bit different to other types of out-apiaries, whereas farmers are usually quite happy with a verbal agreement, the council have clear guidelines on the matter as set out in the Allotment Rules – last revised in 2010.

Allotment Rules 10.4 to 10.6

“10.4      The placing of beehives on an allotment is subject to acceptance by the tenant of direct responsibility for insurance and compliance with the Bee Keepers Agreement, which will be issued by the council.

10.5      The placement of bees on site without a bee agreement will be subject to immediate removal at cost to the tenant and a bee agreement will not be agreed retrospectively.

10.6      No animals or livestock (other than bees) may be kept overnight on allotment land.”

What do you need to do.

Submit a request in writing to keep bees on the plot to the Allotment Officer.  They will send you an agreement which you should sign and date and return to them.  You will also need to place in a prominent position on your allotment a notice of your intention to keep bees – the notice has to be up for 28 days during the growing season or for 56 days at other times.

Contact Details:-

Allotments Officer, Cityparks, Brighton & Hove City Council, Stanmer Nursery, Stanmer Park, Brighton, BN1 9SE.  Tel: 01273 292225 or email:

BBKA Policy and Guidelines on Allotment Beekeeping

Location of Hives: Ideally, bees like a hive with an entrance facing south-east, towards the rising sun.  This helps them to become active earlier in the day.  Also, they like the aspect to be generally open to help flight paths in order to save their energy and do not generally ‘mill about’.  If their flight path is a problem (e.g. it may cross a footpath) the bees can be made to fly about head height by the use of simple screening, such as is used for windbreaks.

Wasps and bees: These are often confused, but wasps nest in the ground or in open, making ‘paper’ nests in sheds or suspended from bushes.  Wasps can be a nuisance to bees, as they rob hives of honey.  Wasps are valuable insect pest predators in spring and summer.

Asian Hornet: Possible threat to all types of bees in the British Isles, arrived in the UK in 2016.  First spotted in Gloucester on 24th September 2016.  A single hornet was spotted last year in the central belt of Scotland at the beginning of April 2017, and again a single hornet has been spotted in Lancashire at the beginning of April 2018.  If you think you have seen an Asian Hornet, please notify the GB Non Native Species Secratiat alert email address at immediately.  Photo’s are extremely useful.  Provide as much detail as possible about the hornet and where you found it.  Do not disturb an active nest.

Killer bees: The so-called ‘killer bees’, more correctly called Africanised honey bees, DO NOT PRESENTLY OCCUR in the UK.


If you would like to speak to a local beekeeper or if you would like some advice about bees on your plot then please contact

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