I have just moved into the vicinity of the Imperial War Museum and am looking for a local site for my bee hive along with its community of friendly and productive bees. A secure garden or accessible roof top would be ideal and assistance with looking after the bees would be appreciated (though not imperative), either from an experienced beekeeper or an enthusiastic beginner. Please contact me through this post if you are interested and would like more information.
Sorry for my naivety - please take this as genuine interest and I hope you can educate me.
You want to introduce a bee hive containing (I suppose) several 10s of thousands of individual bees to a residential area? Are you sure there are enough pollinating flowers in your new inner city area? will your neighbours have to keep their windows closed?
Honest, I am not winding you up - but am interested as to how a bee hive will integrate into SE1
Contact David at www.rootsandshoots.org.uk in Walnut Tree Walk, luckily enough not far from the IWM . They have beehives in their wildlife garden and may be able to accommodate yours or help with housing it. I think they are a member of the British Beekeepers society (if that's the correct organisation?)
The hive is currently located in central London. Its honey production is well up on the national average and the bees haven't worried any neighbours.
Inner city honey is thought to be extra good due to the variety of different pollen sources. Our bees have a particular liking to Lime tree pollen which gives the honey a slightly minty flavour.
Honey bees are hard workers and tend to go straight to the pollen source, they don't usually waste time bumbling around in peoples houses.
There are many hives in the area including one on the roof of The Royal Festival Hall, others in Roots and Shoots Wildlife Garden (off Kennington Road), Walworth Garden Farm, the roof of Fortnum and Mason, and several private gardens, roof terraces and balconies.
The current health problems of the honey bee are well documented and its important that we support this important and fascinating insect.
Not so close to you but the Corporation of London flats directly behind Tate Modern have accessable roofs, but you would need to approach them obviously. I live on the Peabody estate next door and would certainly have an interest in learning more about beekeeping.