Speaker Meeting, 6.15 for 6.30pm

Mon, Aug 2nd 2021 at 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

Speaker: President Kathy, talk entitled “Getting the Buzz”


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President Kathy certainly has the buzz when it comes to bee-keeping. She’s been keeping bees for 10 years and regularly presents day-long taster sessions for novices. Kathy told us her talk would be a very much slimmed-down version of her Taster Day presentation.

Way back 4,500 years ago the ancient Egyptians kept bees in simple hives and collected the honey. Jars of honey have been found in pharaoh tombs. During the medieval period monasteries were busy beekeepers, making beeswax for candles and honey for mead. However, it was not until the 18th century that hives were designed that enabled the harvesting of honey without destroying the colony.

Beekeepers keep bees to collect honey and other products such as beeswax, propolis and royal jelly. Propolis is a resinous mixture collected by honey bees from tree buds or sap which they use to seal up open spaces in the hive. Royal jelly is a secretion used to nourish the larvae and is thought by many people to have health benefits.

A colony of bees consists of a queen bee, thousands of female worker bees, and thousands of male drones. The queen bee is the only sexually mature female in the hive and all the workers and drones are her offspring. The queen can live for 3 years or more and can lay some half a million eggs in her lifetime. Eggs are laid singly in a cell in a wax honeycomb, produced and shaped by the worker bees.

At the height of summer when activity in the hive is frantic the life of a worker bee may be as short as 6 weeks. Worker bees co-operate to find food and use a pattern of dancing, known as the waggle dance, to communicate information with each other. For the first few weeks of their life they perform basic chores within the hive: cleaning empty brood cells, removing debris and other housekeeping tasks, making wax for building or repairing comb, and feeding larvae. Later, they ventilate the hive or guard the entrance. Older workers leave the hive daily, weather permitting, to forage for nectar, pollen and water. Drones do not work or forage; they have no other function than to mate with new queens.

All colonies are totally dependent on their queen, the only egg-layer. She can choose whether or not to fertilize an egg as she lays it; if she does so, it develops into a female worker bee; if she lays an unfertilized egg it becomes a male drone.

Kathy’s very comprehensive talk included a great deal more information than space permits here. If it was a taster of a taster day then this brief report is merely an amuse bouche. Contact Kathy if you are interested in keeping bees, she would be more than happy to help you.

'What We Do' Main Pages:

We have played a role in a significant global public health achievement as the World Health Organization’s Africa region has officially been certified wild polio-free.

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Rotary’s second major donation, of £208,000, was handed over on 7th July 2021 when local Rotarians visited the Great Western Hospital to view the build progress of the nearly completed radiotherapy unit.

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All the funds will go to local charities supported by us

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Smallpox is the only human disease ever eradicated. Let’s make polio the second! Join the fight to end polio with Rotary on World Polio Day

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Brighter Futures launched their Radiotherapy Appeal in 2015. Today, 7 years later, a ribbon cutting ceremony has taken place at the Great Western Hospital

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He's taking part in the Youth Adventure Trust's Virtual Resilience Challenge from 13th to 21st February 2021

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From around the world Rotarians have responded to calls for help.

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£1286 has been sent from our Emergency Disaster Fund to the Disasters Emergency Committee UKRAINE HUMANITARIAN APPEAL

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£1,250 has been sent to both ​Prospect Hospice and Swindon Domestic Abuse Support Service to help bridge the funding gap both charities are currently experiencing.

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Coronavirus is a deadly risk for vulnerable families who have lost their homes. Read more...….

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"In musical entertainment Swindon punches way above its weight. Some of the youngsters we've heard tonight will go on to make a name for themselves"

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A new design for a new name

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Congratulations to the teams from St Joseph’s Catholic College Swindon. The intermediate team (in the picture) was commended and placed joint second by the judges

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Giving money and support to the people in Swindon & district who need it most

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We went to the races in March. It was a meeting with 10 races, 8 riders in each. It wasn’t at Epsom, or Haydock Park, or just up the M4 at Newbury. It was, of all places, in Wanborough Village Hall.

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First place team P.G.Events with the David Maggs Memorial Trophy

The winning team P.G.Events presented with the David Maggs Memorial Trophy to hold for one year by Swindon North Rotary President Mike Helyer

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The Rotary Club hands over £1100 to the Youth Adventure Trust

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Club President Kathy Hobson presents a cheque for £750 to Richard Millard, Chairman of the Trustees

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A brief summary of our Rotary year ending 30/06/2021

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Attendees found plenty at the 2018 Rotary Convention to remind them of the fellowship that binds them and the diversity that Rotary embodies

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Torquay’s Riviera Centre was the venue for the Rotary in Britain and Ireland (RIBI) Annual Conference on 6th April 2018

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Rotarian Terry Williams on his Christmas Tree Plantation

Rotarian Terry Williams has been selling his locally grown Christmas trees again and all the proceeds are going to be divided between two charities

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The new Horizons College Minibus, donated collectively by all the Rotary Clubs of Swindon and District, has been branded with the Rotary logo and other graphics by the Wootton Bassett based company, PG Events, free of charge.

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Rotarian Terry's Christmas Trees enable the Rotary Club to present £1,225 to the Friends of Angel's Orphanage

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The Rotary Club of North Wiltshire (the name was changed to the Rotary Club of Swindon North in 2008) received its charter from Rotary International on 28th September 1966

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Raising funds for the Brighter Futures Appeal

A static 100-mile cycle ride from Highworth to Windsor Castle

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Our stall at Highworth Market on 2nd May 2015

Many thanks to everyone who visited our stall at Highworth Market on 2nd May

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The Community & Vocational Service Committee is tasked with organising fund-raising events and functions.

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Rotarian Terry Williams' remarkable and unique fund raising effort, living in a ShelterBox emergency tent for a week in the Market Place, Highworth

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The Club Service Committee manages the administration of the Rotary Club.

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International, Foundation & Youth Activities Service Committee

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Club Council

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Exceeding expectations, President Lynn's challenge to 3 club members to Zumba in the Co-op Foodstore raised £700 for Swindon Young Carers.

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The Rotary Club of Swindon North charity concert featuring the Swindon Male Voice Choir in St Michael's Church, Highworth.

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A Charity Dog Racing event with dinner held at Blunsdon Abbey Stadium on 14th March 2015 in aid of the NSPCC

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We've Zumda'd in the Highworth Co-op, now we've ridden our bikes in there

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