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Bees' Needs Week 2019

Bees’ Needs Week returned in July in Carnaby, buzzing with action in support of the annual Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) campaign to raise awareness of the nation’s bees and other pollinators in the 2019 Year of Green Action.

The renowned shopping destination, recently hailed for its increased measures to becoming more environmentally friendly, was renamed ‘Carnabee Street’, with a captivating bee-themed takeover of the iconic Carnaby Street arch.

Bee-enthusiasts and conservationists picked up tips on how to help our pollinator pals at the unique pop-up ‘Hive’ at 3 Newburgh Street. Visitors got close to the bee action with a live bumblearium from the University of Reading and an observation bumblebee colony from the University of East Anglia, plus experienced the inside of a bee hive with interactive VR headsets from Kew Gardens. An array of educational games, honey tasting and microscopes to ‘meet the bees’ was also available as well as seed sowing demonstrations.

Globally, almost 90% of wild flowering plant species depend on the transfer of pollen by bees and other animals. Crops which depend on pollinators contribute to a staggering 35% of global crop production volume. Carnaby is not only a shopping destination but also a haven for bees, with over 850 pollinator friendly planted window boxes, planters and hanging baskets across the destination’s 14 streets and over 160,000 bees living across bee hives on Carnaby’s roof tops. Newburgh Street, the home of the Bees’ Needs Week ‘Hive’, is also celebrated as 100% pollinator friendly.

There are some simple things we can all do to bring about the best possible conditions for bees and other insects to flourish.

5 key actions people can take to help our bee population:

  • Grow more flowers, shrubs and trees
  • Leave patches of land to grow wild
  • Cut grass less often
  • Do not disturb insect nests and hibernation spots
  • Think carefully about using pesticides

Shaftesbury were delighted to be awarded a Bees’ Needs Champions Award 2019 in recognition of our work during Bees’ Needs Week.