PRIMARY school youngsters are simply buzzing after their school became a hive of activity ­— quite literally!

Pupils at Old Hall Primary School in Brandlesholme now have their own colony of bees.

Year Three teacher Claire Hornsby together with Summerseat Village Community Group bid for Bolton Council funding to house the bees.

The funding paid for a hive ­— decorated in school colours ­— and 10,000 bees from The Preston Bee Centre as well as equipment, training and mentoring for Mrs Hornsby.

Mrs Hornsby said: “It’s a privilege to be able to take care of these amazing creatures.

“We have been able to explain to the children how important bees are to our environment.

“We are feeding the new colony sugared water over the winter and it’s fascinating to watch them drinking from the feeder.

“The children will be involved in inspecting the hive once the weather warms up again in the Spring.”

She added:”Bees and their relevance to our own existence is very much on the curriculum and appeared in the Year Six SAT tests last year.”

The school already has a seasoned beekeeper in the form of Year Four pupil, Monty Speed. The eight-year-old has been volunteering with the Summerseat Community Hive since the Spring and is one of the youngest bee keepers in the UK.

His mum, Emma Speed, looks after the Summerseat Hive with fellow resident Steve Ogden.

She said: "We are keen that as many young people as possible get to know that bees aren’t harmful and they help us thrive by pollinating our crops.

“Since we started the first hive in Summerseat we have delivered bee talks to more than 300 children and having the hive at Old Hall Primary School will further help to spread the positive message about bees and maybe even mean we have more beekeepers in future.”

Summerseat Village Community Group will also be working with children from Summerseat Methodist School to build raised beds for bee-friendly plants and vegetables, so bees from both hives can benefit from the pollen they produce.

According to The Beekeepers Association beekeeping can be of huge benefit to schools in helping young people develop confidence and self-esteem through a variety of outdoor learning experiences, and being with the bees is one of them.

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