John Read, Lopcombe, Hampshire

John started keeping bees a few years ago, after he discovered 2 swarms had made their home in his garage.  He re-homed them in a hive in his garden and now has around 5 hives in his garden.  He also keeps bees in Kings Sombourne, located in the middle of an arable farm which grows oil seed rape & bird cover that includes American sweet clover. Bees love both plants as they produce a lot of nectar and pollen. 

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John combines his beekeeping with raising lambs, which he tells me he’s cutting back on – to just a few hundred!  Once the lambs are sold in spring it’s time for his bees to start foraging and the beekeeping season to start in earnest so the two work well together.  The photo is of John weighing honey for me in his lamb scales, the first of my beekeepers to have done that!’