Notes from the Magical Mystery Bee Tour

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The Magical Mystery Bee Tour that took place on Saturday May 18th in warm sunshine was indeed magical as the mysteries of the bees were explored within the grounds of a 12th century Cluniac priory in Eastbourne. The main building of the priory, together with its chapel, is still essentially intact and unchanged, redolent with history. But what was even more remarkable is that the extensive grounds were such a haven for wildflowers and old fruit trees, nearly all in full flower or blossom. Not surprisingly, there were a plethora of bees around, of many different species, and the most magical site of all was the sight of a myriad of honey bees flying in and out of a crack in the ancient wall of the priory itself, proof that where there is  sufficient biodiversity, honey bees can still flourish in the wild, now a fairly rare occurrence. All who came on the tour were astounded by the rich and wild beauty of the surroundings, and understood that this was an example of what is possible when rare pockets of such natural habitats are protected, restored, or recreated. Such an example encouraged all on that tour to redouble our efforts to support the Bee Cause and help to arrest the decline in the health and numbers of all species of Britain’s bees.

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