Membership Guide

MEMBERSHIP GUIDE – High Weald Beekeepers Association

  1. The membership year runs from the 1st October to 30th September (e. 1st October 2015 to 30th September 2016).  Membership fees will be shown on the current Membership Application.
  1. Membership fees are due on the 1st of October in each year – regardless of when you joined the High Weald Beekeepers (the exception being item 3). Reminders for renewal will be sent out during September each year.
  1. Members joining after the 1st August in any membership year will be carried over to the next membership year. Please note: If you already have bees you will require Bee Insurance – in order to be covered for up to 3 hives in the year you join i.e. from August to December (the Insurance runs from 1st Jan to 31st Dec) then you will need to pay £2 (for up to 3 colonies – more if you have extra colonies) in order to receive a Certificate for the remainder of the year.  Please speak with the Treasurer for further clarification of this point.  If you are transferring from another Division then your current BDI Certificate will remain valid until the 31st of December). Members joining after the 1st of August will not be registered with the BBKA until the 1st  If you wish to be registered before this date then you will be required to pay the BBKA fee (currently £19).
  1. Membership fees are due on the 1st October and are required to be paid within 6 weeks. After this time your membership with both the HWBKA and the British Beekeepers Association (BBKA) will be cancelled.  All Bee Disease Insurance will expire on the 31st of December in that membership year.  You will not be covered for disease risks after the 31st December, when the policy will be cancelled.  Memberships renewed after the 31st of December will have a lapse of 40 days before the Bee Insurance becomes active.  Late payment of membership fees will be subject to a £5 re-joining fee, which will be payable at anytime of renewal during the relevant membership year.  If you pay by Standing Order it is your responsibility to ensure that it is set at the correct fee (including any extra BDI).  High Weald is not able to alter it for you.

This entitles the member to attend and take part in all High Weald Activities, meetings, educational and social events.  As a full member you will also be registered with the British Beekeeping Association and be entitled to attend and vote at the annual BBKA AGM and any other event organised by them.  You will also receive the BBKA Magazine and Bee Disease Insurance Certificate as insurance for up to 3 colonies.  Full membership also includes the main members’ partner and up to two children under the age of 16 FOR SOCIAL EVENTS ONLY – such as Bee Banter, Christmas Social etc. (Please check if you are unsure) This is due to Insurance reasons.  Only the Full member will be entitled to membership of the BBKA.  The Full member will also receive an electronic copy of the Wealden Apiarist, which is produced bi-monthly and full voting rights at the HWBKA AGM.  Voting rights are for the Full member only.


This entitles a partner/relative living at the same address, to full membership of HWBKA and the BBKA together with all BBKA voting rights.  Please note that you will not receive a copy of the BBKA Magazine (there is one copy per household) and there is no Bee Disease Insurance cover with this membership.  If you have colonies attributed to this membership then they will need to be covered by additional BDI if both the full and partner member have more than 3 colonies. An Electronic copy of the Wealden Apiarist is included.  This membership includes full voting rights at the HWBKA AGM.  There can only be one Partner member per household.


This entitles a young person under the age of 18 to full membership of the HWBKA and membership of the BBKA (but not voting rights of the BBKA) Bee Disease Insurance for up to 3 hives and the BBKA magazine and Wealden Apiarist.  You will have the right to vote at the HWBKA AGM.


An Associate/Social member is entitled to attend ALL HWBKA events and will receive a copy of the Wealden Apiarist only.  This is for people who are already a member of the BBKA through another County Association or those without bees who wish to join us and learn more.  There are no HWBKA AGM voting rights with this membership.


Bee Disease Insurance runs from 1st January to 31st December.

Full and Young Persons membership includes Bee Disease Insurance (BDI) for up to 3 hives.  Should you have more than 3 colonies (or hives) then an additional premium will need to be paid.  You should have Insurance to cover ALL hives/colonies, including Nuclei.  Failure to insure the full number of hives/colonies you own will render any claim invalid.  Additional Insurance can be purchased at any time by contacting the Treasurer.  Partner membership does not include any BDI.

For full details of the cover of your Bee Disease Insurance can be found on the BBKA Website.  A summary of cover is listed on your BDI Certificate.

All BDI Certificates are sent electronically and should be kept safely/printed out and produced in the event of a claim.


As a group the High Weald Beekeepers hold regular meetings and events around the subject of Beekeeping.  Regular talks, Apiary visits, social meetings and practical demonstrations are held throughout the year.  Most of these are free, but some may carry a small fee to cover materials or speakers.

Membership also allows you to hire a honey extractor from the Association for a small fee and refundable deposit and to borrow books from our Library with a  deposit.  We also have a wax melter, tubes and jig for hire for candle making.

We have an Apiary site which is available for members to use, by prior arrangement with the Apiary Manager, as a temporary alternative ‘out apiary’ to facilitate moving bees in the active season.

The Association runs a beginners course for new members each year.  For members with only one or two years experience we encourage you to join our Self Help Improvers Group.


The High Weald Beekeepers produce a bi-monthly magazine entitled the Wealden Apiarist.  This will generally contain details of future events, reports on previous events and any notices or articles that are of interest.  Articles are always welcomed by the Editor.  The magazine is emailed to all members.  It is also available to download from our website.  We do not post copies.


In order to keep costs and time down to a minimum ALL communications are done by email.  Please ensure that you inform the Treasurer, Secretary or Events Secretary of any change of email address.  Without this we cannot keep you up to date.


 Your details will be held on computer and may be distributed to other committee members of High Weald Division for communication between members. Your details will also be passed to the British Beekeepers Association and the FERA Bee Base to validate your bee diseases and third party insurance and to receive the BBKA news.  This will also enable the Seasonal Bee Disease Inspector to contact you with information regarding potential outbreaks or bee related issues.  Please note that your details will not be sold on or used for any other purpose.  Should you wish to opt out of your details being passed to Bee Base then you should ensure that your wishes are communicated to the Treasurer or Secretary.  Please note that in the event of a major disease outbreak (Hive Beetle etc) any members who have opted out of Bee Base are required to give their details by law and we will have to pass them onto the Bee Inspector.


The Committee of the High Weald Beekeepers reserve the right to increase the membership fee for new members or at renewal for existing members, should at any time, the BBKA or the BDI raise their fees.  Only proposed increases in the portion of the membership fee due to the High Weald Beekeepers will be put to the AGM for voting.

Updated: January 2016

This document is also downloadable as a printable pdf from here MEMBERSHIP GUIDE 2015-2016

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