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Community apiary winging its way to Beaumont Leys

A community apiary is winging its way to a city estate thanks to a new project launched by a De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) graduate.

Beaumont Leys Project Bees will be based at Mowmacre Hill Primary School, and used by pupils and teachers at the school as well as people living in the area.

Bees on frame
It is the brainchild of community interest company Buzzing Roots , which connects people, organisations and communities using arts and nature. It was set up by DMU graduate Liga Orlovska.

She said: “The response has been so positive to the idea. We set up a crowdfunding campaign on SpaceHive and it's now at 101% funded which is incredible.

“We are working together with Mowmacre Hill Primary school and we will create a local community apiary at the heart of Beaumont Leys, Leicester. This apiary will connect the community together and help local people develop new skills safely outdoors.”

DMU’s public engagement team DMU Local, which works with schools across the city, has also given funding towards the project, as has the David Cock Foundation Growing Awards and Leicester City Council.

Fi Donovan, head of public engagement at DMU Local, said: “We were only too happy to support the Buzzing Roots programme. The children at Mowmacre Primary and the community in Beaumont Leys will get so much from having the apiary and getting closer to nature.”  

The money will be used to pay for two hives, two bee colonies, beekeeping equipment including suits and training with the Leicestershire and Rutland Beekeeping Association (LRBKA). Teachers have begun training with LRBKA to help manage the apiaries and look after the bees.

Participants will learn new skills including: how to look after bees, about bees as an important element in the local nature, pollinator plants, how to prepare healthy food and much more.

DMU 3rd year Arts and Festivals Management student Beth Chilvers has joined the Buzzing Roots team as a project co-ordinator and event manager for this project in summer when outdoor workshops in the community apiary are planned.

She said: “I am very excited to be working as part of the Buzzing Roots team. Using the arts to connect communities is a passion of mine and being able to do this despite the difficulties COVID-19 presents is super admirable and inspiring for me as a soon-to-be graduate.”

Lee Jowett, Sustainable Schools Coordinator at Leicester City Council said “This is a great opportunity for pupils at the schools to learn about biodiversity and the positive impact they can have on the environment. This is one of many school projects that the council supports around the Eco-Schools programme, of which Mowmacre Hill Primary School is one.”
Posted on Wednesday 5th May 2021

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