There’s a new hive of activity at Rolls-Royce Motor Cars that’s got everyone buzzing.
The luxury car manufacturer is looking for up to five volunteers from members of staff to help at its apiary, which was established on the Goodwood site three years ago.
Wannabeekeepers will attend an introductory session, and those chosen will be given training in beekeeping techniques and equipment, paid for by the company.
They’ll work in the apiary in their own time at weekends, and Rolls-Royce says their rewards will be considerable.
Honey bee conservation is crucial for the long-term sustainability of the natural ecosystem and human food production.
Richard Carter, chief beekeeper and director of global communications for Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, said: ‘Thanks to media interest around the world, our bees have become minor celebrities, and their progress is monitored closely by our customers and followers worldwide.
‘With spring now upon us and the wildflowers and blossoms appearing across our site and surrounding countryside, we’re inviting colleagues to act as volunteer beekeepers for the new honey-making season.
‘It’s a wonderful opportunity to get directly involved in bee conservation, which is so critical in supporting a healthy, sustainable ecosystem and human food production.
‘Plus, colleagues can take pride in helping the bees to create a natural product that’s available in even smaller quantities than our renowned motor cars!’
The apiary has six colonies of around 300,000 English honey bees – all of which, by virtue of Carter’s communications post, are represented on the Rolls-Royce board.
As well as feeding on the myriad wildflowers and trees that grow across the 42‑acre Rolls‑Royce site, the bees can also forage on the plant’s sedum-rich living roof, which at around eight acres (3.2 hectares) is the largest in Britain.
In addition, they can cross into the neighbouring Goodwood Estate, which has 12,000 acres (4,900 hectares) of sustenance.
Carter added: ‘The apiary means a great deal to us as a company and to our customers and followers around the world.
‘The new volunteers will play a crucial part in its success this season, and we’re anticipating a great response to our recruitment drive.’