Oakdale Bees is an apiary of British Buckfast bees set in four acres of beautiful, bee friendly meadows, bordering Royal Windsor Forest in Oakley Green, Berkshire.
The hives, consisting of about one million bees, were established by owner Elisabeth Barton-Grew in 2015 to fulfil a long-term passion she has for nurturing and protecting nature’s pollinators.
As well as producing sought-after Oakdale Bees honey, Elisabeth has also developed a collection of handmade eco hive products including Beeswax wraps, Beeswax wrap kits, Doggie Paw and Nose Balm, plus eco gifts for both children and adults. She recently launched the Beevitalise Range of organic polishes aimed at preserving wood and leather products.
Elisabeth is not the first member of the family to own hives. Her Uncle Tom, who was Head Gardener for Leeds Parks Department, was also a Beekeeper and often gave interviews on local radio on the subject. Elisabeth has found the notebooks that she inherited from her Uncle to be a rich source of inspiration.
Informing and educating is an important part of the work done at Oakdale Bees. A series of Experience Days including an Introduction to Bee Keeping is held during the year based in the bespoke Bee Barn on site. Participants can don bee suits and get up close to the hives, learning about how they can help to save bees and understand more about the structure of the hives and the role of beekeepers.
Moving forward and continuing to strive for new ways to work sustainably, Oakdale Bees has partnered with waysintowork.com on an initiative to make ‘buff balls’ from surplus scraps of organic cotton to be used for polishing or other cleaning tasks. For every buff ball sold Oakdale Bees will make a 50p donation to Friends of the Earth in support of their ‘Save Britain’s Bees’ campaign.