Bee-Keeping in Ireland
A History by James K. Watson sets out the origins of the Association:
“In 1942, Robert N. Tweedy, feeling that there was an increasing demand for some kind of beekeepers’ organisation in Dublin, conceived the idea of giving a series of lectures on the craft in the Country Shop, St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin. These were very well attended and such enthusiasm was engendered among the beekeepers that he thought the next step should be the formation of a County Dublin Beekeepers’ Association. With this in mind, some twelve of the leading enthusiasts met on 14 January 1943, in the offices of Arthur Ganly, 20 Lincoln Place, Dublin and there agreed to establish an association.”
The context for this was the severe rationing of sugar in Emergency times. People who had no previous interest in bees wanted both lectures on what beekeeping involved as well as the opportunity to watch experienced beekeepers handling a hive of bees.
The initial Committee realised that a country-wide body would be a further advantage and with groups in the rest of the country formed the Federation of Irish Beekeepers’ Associations in the above-mentioned Lincoln Place offices on St. Patrick’s Day 1944. Six of the Federation Presidents have been members of the Co. Dublin Association.
Once the Association was up and running, it also became a place for beekeepers to meet & discuss the craft, to organise Honey Shows, to operate an apiary, to enable bulk purchase of sugar and hiring of extractors. It also has taken part in numerous public events over the years to promote and explain beekeeping to the public.
Graham Hall 2020
What we do
Co Dublin Beekeepers Association has approximately 200 members, we are affiliated to FIBKA the Federation of Irish Beekeepers.
- During the winter months we run a series of lectures for our members, these are usually on the first Monday of the month.
- In the spring we run a beginners course which consists of lectures and practical sessions (the latter when the weather allows).
- Every year we are found at the Bloom festival, with an information/education stand to introduce the bees to the public.
- We also are found at the Dublin House Show in the RDS every summer.
- We stage an annual Honey Show in the autumn where beekeepers can compete, in the many and varied aspects of products of the hive, for trophies and other prizes. The public also get the opportunity to buy pure honey directly from the beekeeper.