Timeline – Beekeeping in Croydon

  • 1879 Surrey Beekeepers’ Association set up with Croydon as one of three founding divisions.
  • 1921 BeeCraft magazine first published jointly by Kent and Surrey Beekeeping Associations. This is now the leading publication in the UK for beekeepers and those interested in bees and conservation.
  • 1923 First ever National Honey Show held at the Crystal Palace. The show was jointly run by Kent and Surrey Beekeeping Associations. Since then it has grown to be a major national event which attracts hundreds of visitors and competition entrants each year.

A famous Croydon Beekeeper

Joseph Warder

Joseph Warder

Joseph Warder, born before 1655, took up his residence at Croydon in about 1688. He practiced there as a physician for over thirty years, and was a leading member of the independent congregation. Warder made a special study of the habits of bees, and in 1693 he encapsulated the results of many years of observation in a treatise entitled ‘The True Amazons, or the Monarchy of Bees’ (London, 8vo; the second edition of 1713 contains a dedication to Queen Anne). The work, which was considerably in advance of any former treatise and contained many curious particulars concerning the habits of bees as well as practical instructions for their management, went through nine editions, the last of which appeared in 1765. It remained the standard work on the subject until it was superseded by John Thorley’s ‘Mελισσηλογία, or the Female Monarchy’ (London, 1744, 8vo).