West Dorset Beekeepers Association

The site is designed to be a resource for members of the West Dorset Beekeepers’ Association

(WDBKA) and for interested members of the general public.



Although the last confirmed sightings of Asian Hornets in East Dorset were in Oct ‘19 there is no room for complacency. We all need to remain vigilant.

Jersey has reported the first queen hornet of the 2021 season … check out the image on their Facebook page here.

Please make sure you are aware of the key features of an Asian Hornet … and that you are familiar with the procedure for reporting a sighting.

Don’t forget to download the Asian Hornet App … it’s very good!

There is plenty of good information available to keep all beekeepers informed and up to date with the latest news. See the links below.

relevant links

Click here for a link to the BBKA Asian Hornet page.

Click here for Dorset BKA information.

Click here for a link to the national Asian Hornet Action Team site which contains a large amount of relevant information.

Peter Crabbe is the Asian Hornet Co-ordinator for WDBKA. He can be contacted at asianhornet@westdorsetbees.org.uk.

Important information


What to do if you have a swarm of bees turn up in your garden? DON’T Panic! Find out more and where to get help by clicking on the ‘swarms’ tab above..

Thinking about starting to keep bees?

Please click here for full details of our last comprehensive course for Beginners. We were hoping to be able to run another  similar course in 2021 … however, sadly the restrictions in relation to Covid-19 have made this impossible. We fully intend to re-start the programme in January 2022. The content will be very similar to the description in the link above.

 It’s always a good idea to register your details so we can pop your name onto our waiting  list of potential students for future courses.

British Beekeeping Association

The WDBKA is affiliated to the BBKA – British Beekeeping Association. There are five branches within Dorset.   Click here to visit the website.


All beekeepers are encouraged to register with  BeeBase ,  the APHA National Bee Unit website. It is designed for beekeepers and provides excellent support through publications and local Seasonal Bee Inspectors, who monitor the health of colonies and notifiable diseases. Click here to visit the website.

CANCELLED - Honey Show Rules - 2022

Due to the COVID-19 virus the Melplash Show has been cancelled for 2021.
These rules apply to the Melplash Show which takes place annually in August. The next show is on Thursday 25th August 2022.
 Visit the show website to view a copy of the schedule.
Remember that entries can be made online – saving time and money!


  1. Entries should be made on the form provided by the Secretary of the Melplash Agricultural Society and reach the Show Office by the closing date on the entry form.
  2. No late entries accepted
  3. No exhibit may be entered in more than one class.
  4. Exhibitors are permitted to make more than one entry in a class but shall not take more than one award in that class.
  5. Joint owners of an apiary are to be regarded as one exhibitor therefore may not make separate entries except for classes 481,482,483,484, 485, 486, 486A, 487, 488,489,490,491,499, 499A
  6. Classes may be amalgamated or cancelled at the discretion of the Show Committee.
  7. The Show Committee have the power to refuse any entry.
  8. Members of more than one Association may only enter under one.


  1. The labels, as supplied by the Melplash Show Secretary, must not be altered in any way.
  2. Except where otherwise stated, no label, trademark or other distinguishing mark may be placed on an exhibit.
  3. Labels shall be affixed to jars with a rubber band through the label and fixed around the top of the jars.
  4. Exhibits in commercial classes should bear a lot number and conform to current food labelling regulations.


  1. Extracted honey must be exhibited in clear 454g (1lb) squat glass jars with lacquered metal or white/gold plastic commercial screw or twist off lids, all of British Standard pattern and matching.
  2. Colour will be judged in accordance with B.B.K.A. grading filters complying with BS1656, available from WDKBA Secretary.


  1. Exhibitors may stage exhibits the evening before the show or before 0815a.m. on the day. Judging will commence at 0830am.
  2. Exhibits shall not be removed before the time stated in the schedule
  3. Competitors are responsible for the delivery and collection of their own exhibits personally or by a named third party.
  4. Every article must be the bone-fide property of the exhibitor
  5. All honey and wax must be from the exhibitors own bees except for the candles, wax models and cookery classes.
  6. No exhibit may be tasted or interfered with in any way by any person without permission of the Steward. The Show Committee will take normal care of the exhibits during the Show but will not be responsible in any circumstances for loss or damage sustained by exhibitors in any way what so ever.


    1. In the event of a tie for a cup or prize on a points basis, the award shall be jointly awarded.
    2. For cups and special prizes points will be awarded as follows:-

    First: 6; Second: 5; Third: 4; V.H.C.: 3; H.C: 2; C: 1;

    1. The cups and prizes will be awarded to the members who gain most points in the classes indicated in the schedule.


  1. Only exhibitors will be permitted to supply honey (limited to only 6lbs of honey this year per exhibitor) and hive products for sale on show day with the understanding that honey and hive products from the West Dorset BKA  are sold first and that the labelling complies with the regulations.
  2. A sales booking in form must be completed and given to the nominated Booking in Secretary on show day.
  3. In the event of a dispute the Show Committee decision is final.


  1. Sections must be enclosed in white section cases or in plain commercial containers with windows
  2. The section must be easily removable from its container
  3. Round sections to be displayed with clear covers on both sides


  1. Wax exhibits must fall within the weights specified in the schedule
  2. See above staging and collection of exhibits – 5
  3. When more than one piece is to be displayed they must be matching in all respects.


  1. Mead must be exhibited in clear colourless glass 75cl bottles of the new sauterne type (of round section with rounded not fluted shoulders) without lettering or ornament of any kind.
  2. The bottles must have cork stoppers with white plastic flanges.


  1. Must be made by the exhibitor.
  2. All cakes/confectionary to be exhibited on a white paper plate with a doyley in clear plastic or covered with cling film.
  3. See above staging and collection of exhibits – 5.


  1. Cut comb honey must be displayed in standard white or clear commercial 227g/8oz containers with transparent snap-on lids.


  1. Must be shown in a ‘bee-tight’ case being glazed on both sides and must be capable of easy withdrawal.


Carole Brown  01308 456210

Email: secretary@westdorsetbees.org.uk