Honey harvest "devastated"

Urban bee expert Brian McCallum installs a beehive on the roof of St Paul's Cathedral in 2010 Photo: Lewis Whyld/PA Archive/Press Association Images

London's honey crop is the worst in the country, after a summer described by experts as "devastating". The capital's bees produced just 5.6 pounds of honey per colony, compared with 25.8 pounds last year.

Friends of the Earth campaigners highlighting the loss of honey bees' habitat on the south bank of the Thames Credit: Matt Dunham/AP/Press Association Images

The British Beekeepers Association's latest survey says beekeepers have endured a desperately difficult summer. Rain and cold weather are being blamed for depleted honey supplies.

“The results for the London area suggest that it was not just bad weather that was the problem. They may also highlight the lack of forage in the city for many bees. Rather than putting beehives on office roofs, we encourage companies in London who want to help to look at different ways of supporting bees and beekeepers. We need more forage for the bees and better-educated beekeepers. Individuals can help too by becoming an armchair beekeeper and taking up the BBKA’s offer to Adopt a Beehive.”

– Angela Woods, London Beekeepers Association