Matt Somerville grew up on a fruit farm in Kent, then trained in agriculture but was disillusioned with its intensive industrial methods and became a carpenter and boat builder. However, in the last decade, Matt heard about and witnessed the decline of honeybees and after studying modern beekeeping found problems parallel to those in intensive agriculture. Since then, he has been inspired by bees that have lived unmanaged in the wild to take positive action to change our relationship with these vital insects. Matt has now installed over 300 hives across the country, allowing bee swarms to find and populate them. He now focuses on making log hives for healthier, more vigorous bees, which thrive without our interference.
Honeybee health is under pressure from a reduction in natural forage, increased pesticide use in industrial agriculture and the many interventions of the beekeeper. Since the 1850s their management has continually been developed to maximise honey production, at the cost of the colony’s vigour and the biodiversity of our environment. Now we need to re-examine […]