Project Pollinator was launched at Surrey's Camberley Heath GC back in August when eight honey bee hives were installed in the out of play area near the 17th and 18th fairways.
The idea came about when Course Manager, Nick Paris, was exploring ways to regenerate the heathland on the course and one option he suggested was to increase the heather growth.
Nick was aware that the British bee population is in decline and thought the course would be a great home for them. A member at the club put Nick in touch with the local bee keepers and the hives were installed a few weeks later.
Nick is keen to restore the heathland ecology and character back to the original Harry Colt design of 1913, encouraging all Club members to take a great interest in the habitat of the course they play on. The introduction of bees was the perfect way to help with the pollination of heather; bees see in a spectrum of blues and ultraviolet. They were residents on the course for a total of eight weeks during the heather flowering season.
A bee awareness day was held in the club to educate members about the declining bee population as well as the benefit of giving the bees a home on the course. The production of Camberley Heath Honey created a great buzz(no pun intended) around the Clubhouse; it was used in the Clubs kitchen as well as being sold by the jar behind the bar, selling out within a matter of days.
After such a successful year the bees will be returning to Camberley Heath next summer with further bee awareness days for members and the possibility of local school visits to learn about pollination.