My highlights of the course included finishing the bee safari and hearing a virgin queen piping at the association apiary. I got started by purchasing two nucleus colonies from Paynes Bee Farm, one I collected in May and the other in June (a good way to start but expensive). Now that I know members sell nucs through the association I would possibly purchase nucs from them instead of forking out £230 per nuc. The support within the course and the association is excellent, which for me is great when learning something completely new. I did notice that many members don't try to portray beekeeping as "fashionable" or anything else other than what it is, this might put some people off, but Beekeeping is not for everyone. As I have found, Beekeeping is time-consuming, I have a full-time job but my responsibilities outside of work are small so I am able to commit to beekeeping well; I can't imagine what it must be like if you have a young family.
The most difficult aspect of beekeeping for me is accepting that there are many techniques and opinions which don't always work. In conclusion, I thoroughly enjoyed the course and I would suggest it to anyone interested in becoming a beekeeper. Next year I would like to do the improver course.