The beekeeper checking on the Aberthaw bees

New buzz on site at Aberthaw Cement Plant

There’s been a new delivery at the Aberthaw Cement Plant – of Apis mellifera. That’s honey bees, for those who aren’t familiar with all things small and buzzing.

We have five bee colonies at the plant, helping the local ecological cycle and also supporting local farmers by pollinating crops.

The cement plant has lots of areas, close to the quarry, that offer a lot of natural habitats, and facilitating biodiverse species on site is very important to the Lafarge Tarmac team. Tasked with supporting these aims, Environmental Coordinator Kara Bennett has championed the addition of the new bee hives to add to the site’s wildlife population.

Kara said, “Our site is positioned between two river estuaries, the River Thaw and the River Kenson. We have land near the quarry that we don’t use specifically and which naturally offers sites of biodiversity. The quarry is already home to wetland birds and some species of newts, with regular visits by flocks of Canadian Geese each year.

“Part of my role is to make the most of what the plant naturally has to offer and the unique environment of the quarry. Setting aside space for our new bee colonies seemed a natural enhancement that would support our biodiversity programme.”

The bee hives are being set up and will be looked after by our family of experienced bee keepers – the Frasers, who are helping colleagues at the site learn more about the bees and how to care for them on site.

Lynda Fraser said, “As a family, we have been looking after bees for a number of years, and we are delighted to be able to have more hives at the Aberthaw Cement Plant.  We have chosen a variety of bee that is known for its good temperament and also for its honey production. We are keen to promote sustainable honey collection, so never collect more honey from a hive than it can easily sustain.”

“A colony of bees can produce 25kg of honey a year and we’re looking forward to tasting the honey that our very own bees make.

“And when our bees have settled into their new homes, we’re going to invite local school children to come to site find out more about how important bees are to our world – and maybe even to taste our honey,” added Kara.

To find out about school visits to site, please email or call 01446 752300.

The cement plant in Aberthaw has been part of the south Wales community for over 100 years, employing a largely local workforce and its contribution to the Welsh economy includes supporting many local suppliers. Lafarge Tarmac is committed to being a sustainable business and is on target to achieve greater than 30 per cent of fuel for the Aberthaw Cement Plant from alternative sources such as tyres and municipal waste.

The Aberthaw Plant is the only cement works in south Wales. Cement made at Aberthaw has contributed to some of Wales’ most significant construction projects of recent times, including Pembroke Power Station, The Millennium Centre and home of the Welsh Government – The Senedd, both in Cardiff Bay.


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