Swarms are a natural phenomenon

What to do if you find a swarm.

If you see a swarm cluster, please contact the nearest collector immediately from the list below.

Bees in a swarm state are usually fairly gentle but for your own safety, please stay at a safe distance and keep children and pets away. 

Guildford Beekeepers Association will collect swarms to protect the bees and keep the public safe.

This service is free of charge.

However, we are continually raising funds to enhance our existing Training Apiary and develop it into a Sustainable Beekeeping Centre to support our local bee populations, and create a place where local schools and community groups can experience beekeeping first-hand.

If you would like to help us achieve our aims, any donation, large or small, is most welcome and very much appreciated.

To Donate click here.

Please be aware that any assistance given by a beekeeper is provided on the basis that neither Guildford Beekeepers Association nor its members can be held responsible for any inadvertent damage or injury to property or persons during the process of collecting swarms.

Swarms will be collected subject to the collector doing an accessibility and risk assessment on behalf of the public and themselves.



Guildford Division Swarm Collectors list 2022

Post Code Covered

Area Covered  


Contact Number

 GU1 2**


Steve Cotney

07788 144332

GU1 3**


Chris Roberts

07886 394801

GU2 7**


Richard Whitehead

07919 618772

GU3 1**

Hoggs Back area

Tim Copp

07916 236228

GU3 3**

Hoggs Back area

Hugh Coakley

07752 325557

GU4 8**

Shere, Albury Shalaford

Peter Smith

07534 919121

GU5 0** 


Steve Cotney

07788 144332

GU6 8**

Cranleigh and surrounding areas.

Jonathan Brookhouse

07768 376265

GU8 4**


Roy Kelsey

01483 208557

GU12 6**

Ash Green

Astrid Bowers-Veenman

01252 330229

GU15 1**


Mark Scott


GU21 4**

Woking area

David Parker

07712 079307

GU21 8**

St. Johns, Woking area

Seamus Anderson

07841 672638

GU23 4**

Ripley Area

Peter Shoesmith

07831 386561

GU24 0**

Pirbright, Worplesdon, Normandy

Lou Major

07999 525510

GU24 9**

Bisley, West End, Knaphill

Jonathan Pegg

01483 830507

KT11 3**

West Horsley area

Peter Dawson

07768 926515

KT24 5**

East Horsley area

Dave Bennett

07818 026044

KT24 6**

East Horsley area

Peter Dawson

07768 926515


If you are not within or near any of the areas covered above, a collector may be found nearer to you using the British Beekeepers Association website here


The Swarming Process.

Honeybees are social insects that have evolved over millions of years, alongside flowering plants.

Consider the honeybee colony as a superorganism that naturally reproduces by the process of division. They do this by producing a swarm.

Swarms are typically created during the Spring and early Summer seasons when there is an abundance of forage around to give them a chance for survival.

As they are out in the open, a swarm is in a vulnerable state and its survival is uncertain.

The swarm needs to find a suitable new home that will protect it from the elements as soon as possible so that they can create a new nest, establish a new colony and create a new generation of bees that can gather sufficient stores to sustain them through the coming winter.

A viable swarm consists of a queen, and a large number of worker bees that split away from the original colony and fly off together in search of a new home.

The swarm leaves behind a new queen or a queen cell with sufficient brood and bees to begin a new colony.

The departing swarm flies a moderate distance from the original nest site and congregates into a cluster on a convenient branch or accessible structure.

Scout bees are then sent out to find a suitable new location which may not be suitable or convenient for humans such as in a chimney, a wall cavity or in the eaves of a roof. 



Bumblebee, Bee, Insect, Pollinate

If you have a bumblebee nest, it is recommended that they are left alone to complete their short life cycle. They are not aggressive unless disturbed and the nest should be left where it is if possible. The nest will dwindle and disappear towards the end of Summer. New queens will go off to hibernate until next spring when they will emerge to begin their cycle of a new nest again, usually in a different place.

For more in-depth information, advice and identification of Bumblebees go to the Bumblebee Conservation Trust here.



Unfortunately, we cannot help with the removal of wasp nests.

Wasps are an important natural predator of smaller insects and help keep an equilibrium in nature. Please consider leaving them in place unless they are causing a danger or hindrance.

Please get in touch with your local pest control company in your area to deal with wasps. 

Guildford Borough Environmental Health 01483 444371

Waverley Borough Env. Health 01483 869424

Woking Borough Council Env. Health 01483 755855