The Preliminary Beekeeping Course 


“The” Course for anyone thinking about beginning

 Bee Keeping



Delivered by The Killinchy & District Beekeeping Association. 
Commencing Jan 2021 










Course Overview:
A practical and informative course over 10 evenings providing the necessary knowledge and skills to get established in beekeeping.
This course has both theoretical and practical sessions and provides the opportunity of achieving a Preliminary Certificate of Proficiency in Beekeeping awarded by the Federation of Irish Beekeepers’ Associations.

This Preliminary Beekeeping course is an introductory course. It covers the basics of beekeeping, setting up an apiary, acquiring bees, hive management, swarm control, disease control and honey production.

The minimum age for candidates participating in the course is 11 years of age. Please note though that all children between the ages of 11 and 16 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian for the whole duration of the course.

The course will normally run for 10 sessions, one per week, commencing in January 2020 

There will normally be seven evening classroom sessions followed by three practical beekeeping sessions in the apiary in April/early May when it becomes possible to examine hives and manipulate bees.

The contents of the course include: • Natural history of the honeybee and colony structure. • Manipulation of a colony of honeybees. • Hives and frames. • Siting colonies in an apiary. • The beekeeping calendar. • Colony diseases, pests and poisoning. • Foraging. • Harvesting honey from the colony.


This course will be run by experienced Beekeepers Phelim Breen and Valentine Hodges.

Course fee is £140. Our Association membership fee which provides public liability insurance, is included in this fee.

Students must provide their own suits and gloves for the practical sessions in April/May. On starting the course, students will be advised on the suitability of any purchases so please refrain from getting clothing, equipment or even bees until then. 

If you would like further info, please contact the course tutors at: 


You can enrol for this course at  

We are unfortunately unable to take any paper applications this year.

This course will is now open for booking (see the below link to booking). Is is currently planned that theory classes will be held in Comber Rifle Club.

Please message us or the course tutor if you have any further questions.