Hive Parts

Metalwork for Brood Boxes and Supers are sold seperately. Please select from the bottom of the left hand column.

Bottom bee space is standard. If you prefer top bee space then please advise.
National Observation Hive
First Grade Western Red Cedar 6 Frame Observation Hive c/w queen excluder, dummy board, shutters, inspection tray and optional roof/crown board.

Cedar Observation Hive

Peak Hives Fondant Cosy
Keep your bees as warm as toast and well fed over winter. Designed to take Fondabee and Ambrosia 2.5Kg Packs.
Peak Hives Fondant Cosy
Assembled £42.56
National Varroa Floor
Comes with Yellow Correx slide out tray for Varroa inspection and entrance block.
national hive open mesh floor with slide out tray
Assembled Cedar £43.52 Assembled Red Deal £29.76
National Brood
assembled national hive brood box Assembled Cedar £76.28 Assembled Red Deal £39.89
National Super
cedar national hive super Assembled Cedar £52.96 Assembled Red Deal £31.21
National 4" Roof
assembled cedar national hive roof Assembled Cedar £71.64 Assembled Red Deal £46.50
National 6" Roof
assembled cedar national hive 6 Assembled Cedar £74.23 Assembled Red Deal £49.90
National Gabled Roof
national hive gabled roof Assembled Cedar £91.65 Assembled Red Deal £53.45
National Hive Stand W Splayed Legs and Large Landing Board
national hive stand w splayed legs Assembled Cedar £53.46 Assembled Red Deal £33.86
National Hive Stand W Landing Board
national hive stand Assembled Cedar £49.22 Assembled Red Deal £27.86
Double Hive Stand
double hive stand Assembled and finished. Just attach legs to top with supplied bolts. Assembled Cedar £136.87 Assembled Red Deal £72.65
National 14x12 Brood Box
national hive 14x12 brood box Assembled Cedar £102.34 Assembled Red Deal £50.54
Framed Queen Excluder
Framed Queen Excluder Framed Queen Excluders suitable for both top and bottom bee space. £17.89

Apiguard Crown Board
Apiguard Crown Board Facilitates administration of 'Apiguard' and can be used as a Clearer Board with the supplied Porter Bee Escapes. £18.23

Crown Board
National Crown Board Can also be used as a Clearer Board with the supplied Porter Bee Escapes. £14.55

Polycarbonate Quilt
National Polycarbonate Quilt Transparent alternative to the Crown Board. Allows viewing bees with minimal disruption to the colony. £21.21

Snelgrove Board
National Hive Snelgrove Board Invented by Leonard Snelgrove for the purpose of effective swarm/colony splitting and management. See Snelgrove Method £34.56

Travelling Screen
National Hive Travelling Screen Allows bees to breathe/stay cool whilst being transported. When moving a hive over a long distance remove the roof and crownboard and replace with a travelling screen. Hold in place with one or two hive straps. 3mm mesh to ensure no bees escape. £22.34

National Nucleus Hive
Suitable for 6 Hoffman frames with a higher roof to take 1/4 gallon liquid feeders. Comes with dummy board for easier inspection.

National Nucleus Hive

National Nucleus Hive 14x12
As above but 14x12.

14x12 nucleus hive

Ashforth Feeder
Lock Jointed Cedar. Inside sealed with three coats of paint. Perspex cover over bee area. Large holds 10 litres and Nuc 5 litres.

Ashforth Feeders

Nucleus Stand W Splayed Legs & Large Landing Board
nucleus hive stand with splayed legs

Assembled Cedar £44.45 Assembled Red Deal £27.12
National Nucleus Stand W Landing Board
nucleus hive stand

Assembled Cedar £38.98 Assembled Red Deal £20.94
Nucleus Hive Super
Supplied with fitted metal runners. assembled nucleus hive super Assembled Cedar £42.52 Assembled Red Deal £29.89
Castellated Spacers and Metal Runners
metal runners Metal Runners £1.40 per pair

Castellated Spacers £2.18 per pair.

castellated spacers

Porter Bee Escapes. £1.20

porter bee escape

Hive Tools
Manufactured locally in Sheffield.

Hive Tools

Mouse Guard
Mouse Guard


National Entrance Block
Western Red Cedar with a small and large entrance. Made slightly overlength. Cut to fit your hive.

Entrance Block £2.54

Dummy Boards
Choose from National Hive Standard Brood, National 14x12 Brood or National Super

Dummy Boards

National Hive Hoffman, DN1, SN1 and SN4 Frames are now available in Flat Packs of 10 and 50. All packs come supplied with some frame nails to get you started.

Peak Hives Frames

Foundation Wax
National BS Wired Foundation. We Stock the most popular sizes. Deep, Shallow and 14x12 wax foundation.

Peak Hives Wired Foundation

Ready Assembled Frames
National Hive Hoffman, DN1, SN1 and SN4 Ready Assembled Frames in Packs of 10 with wired worker foundation wax.

Peak Hives Frames

Plastic Frame Ends
Plastic frame spacers available in narrow and wide. Sold in bags of 100. Plastic ends are available in white in either a narrow or wide spacing.

Nucleus Colonies
Peak Hives Nucleus Colony

If you are interested in a top quality Nucleus Colony on 5 or 6 frames please email
and we will pass on your details to our bee breeder Helen. She's an expert with a wealth of experience and produces quality nucs with marked queens. She is also breeding now from newly arrived Buckfast Queens.

British National Beehives

Based in a small workshop in Tideswell in the Peak District we make Highest Quality British National Beehives out of 1st grade American Western Red Cedar or High Quality Red Deal according to the British Beekeepers Association (BBKA) Modified National Hive Plans. Everything we sell we make here in the Peak District. We also stock other items of Beekeeping Supplies including Frames, Foundation Wax and Hive Tools. The driving forces behind are sustainability and quality workmanship. Sustainability because, well it matters quite a bit we think and quality workmanship because customer satisfaction is paramount.

Fully Assembled National Hives

Customise to your requirements and choose either 1st grade Western Red Cedar or Red Deal. Standard Brood Box and Varroa Floor are included in the price. Bottom Bee Space is the National Hive standard so if you want Top Bee Space tick the checkbox. Don't forget to add on your metalwork requirements from the left hand column. We stock metal runners for Hoffman Frames and Castellated Spacers for SN1 etc. Please choose your hive options and extras below:






14x12 Brood Box + £26.06  

Framed Wired Queen Excluder + £17.89  

Top Bee Space. Free.  

red deal    Red Deal Discount.  

national hive in western red cedar


Want to see your National Hive being made? Here's what's going on in the workshop right now. The image is updated every 10 minutes during working hours. Click to see full size...



The rest of the centre column is an ongoing blog of what's new at and other items of interest...veg garden...renewables etc, but please don't let reading about the allotment distract you from placing your order...:-)

Advisory Leaflet 367

The entire contents of Advisory Leaflet 367 from the Minstry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1961).  Scanned using Optical Character Recognition – Will sort out the bloopers ASAP.

national hive from advisory leaflet 367

national hive from advisory leaflet 367

THE design and dimensions of the National single-walled hive, described here, follow closely the revised specification issued by the British Standards Institution (British standard 1300: 1960). All the units are fully interchangeable with those constructed to the patterns given in earlier editions of this leaflet.

General Description
The hive consists basically of-a floor (Fig. 2) provided with an entrance block, one or more deep boxes {Fig. 3a) serving as a brood chamber, a crownboard (Fig. 4) and a roof (Fig. 5). For the storage of surplus honey, “supers” in the form of deep orshallow boxes, or section racks (Fig. 6) are added above the brood cham- -ber. Queen excluders made to B.S. specification are available from bee appliance dealers for insertion be- tween brood chamber and supers.
The deep box is designed to take up to eleven 14 in. X 8! in. frames with 1-! in. lugs. The shallow box holds eleven shallow frames 14 in. x 5-! in. with standard narrow spacing, or nine frames with wide spacing. The recessed end walls in both types of box provide excellent handholds for lifting individual units, or for moving the whole hive when the units are fixed together for transporting from one site to another. r
The section rack, taking thirty-two sections each 4-! in. X 4! in., has D-shaped finger grips cut into the thickness of the walls.
The ro(jf is designed to provide a It in. ventilated, bee-tight air space above the crownboard; it is equally suitable if a canvas quilt is used in- stead of a crownboard. The sides of the roof are deep enough to pre”ent it from blowing off in windy weather.
The floor is designed to be rever- sible to provide a full width entrance ! in. deep on one side or i in. deep on the other. It should be supported clear of the ground, either on four bricks or on some form of stand. The simple type of stand illustrated here (Fig. 7) has an alighting board which fits flush against the front of the floor; the side runners are cut away to form handholds.
The deep and shallow boxes may be placed on the floor with the frames lying either parallel, or at right angles to the entrance (“warm way” or “cold way” respectively). The bee- space is below the frames in each unit.
The section rack, like the deep and shallow supers, fits flush on the unit below it. A bee-space under the sec-

tions is provided by the transverse strips which support them in the rack.


FLOOR The dimensions of the floor are 18l in. X 18l in. x 2 in. The floor- boards are of timber -! in. thick, with tongued and grooved or lapped joints, grooved i in. into side rails -! in. thick and 2 in. deep, the grooves being i in. from one edge and ~..,in. from the other; the back is closed on each side with a strip of wood, one i in. X i in. X l6i in. and the other i in. X i in. X l6i in., nailed on at opposite ends.

ENTRANCE BLOCK The entrance block is 16! in. long and a bare i in. square in cross section with a 5 in. x * in. central cut-away on one face. Using the floor with its deeper side uppermost, the block can be inserted to give either a reduced entrance to the hive or to close it completely. To prevent the block being pushed in beyond the front wall of the hive, it is recommended that a staple should be driven into the inner face of each of the side rails of the floor, i in. from the front end, to leave a projecting loop of about i in.
BROOD CHAMBER The outside lateral dimensions of the brood chamber are ISk in. X ISi in. ; the depth is Si in. All four walls are made of i in. finished tim- ber. The end walls are 17 in. X 7 * in. and are let into the side walls to a depth of * in., 1 in. from each end. TQis I in. space between the outside surface of each end wall and the end of the side walls is closed with two fillets, one at the top and one at the bottom. The top fillet is rebated on the inside * in. deep from the top edge, leaving a shoulder t in. wide. This rebate forms part of the recess

national hive as per advisory leaflet 367

national hive as per advisory leaflet 367

national hive as per advisory leaflet 367

national hive as per advisory leaflet 367

which encloses the ends of the frame lugs. The bottom fillet is rebated on the underside to a depth of t in. leaving a shoulder of! in. This pro- vides the bee-space above the lugs of the frames in any box below. The upper surface of the bottom fillet is chamfered to shed the rain.
The frame lugs are raised above the rebates of the top fillets on run- ners. These runners are set with their top edges 1~ in. below the top edges of the side walls of the box.
A good method of constructing the ends of the box is illustrated in Fig. 3a, where the top and bottom fillets are attached to the side walls by tenon joints. These joints should not be cut less than i in. from the top and bottom edges of the walls respective- ly. Further details of the construc- tion are shown in Fig. 3b.

The dimensions and construction are the same as for the brood cham- ber except that the depth is Si in.
The depths specified for the brood chamber and the shallow super provide a bee-space of i in. below the frames, which is the maximum that can be permitted if the building of burr comb by the bees is to be avoided. This allows for a slight shrinkage of the wood. It is ~ost important to use well-seasoned timber to ensure that the bee-space is not reduced below! in. by excessive shrinkage in the width of the boards after they have been cut to the specified size.

CROWNBOARD The dimensions of the crownboard are 18 in. X 18 in. Recommended materials are knot-free, well-sea- soned softwood at least i in. thick, with rebated or tongued and grooved joints, or resin-bonded plywood atleast 5 mm. thick. A t in. bee-space is provided on each side by framing
-with four strips of softwood 17i in. X ! in. X t in. The strips are so arranged that at any corner the joint on one side is at right-angles to that on the other (Fig. 4). Alternatively, the board may be rebated into a frame of such thickness that a t in. bee-space is provided on each side.
‘ The board should have two openings 11\- in. x 3 in. adapted to receive Porter bee e-scapes, one centrally situated and the other parallel to it, with its centre 3 in. from the edge of the board.

ROOF The inside measurements of the roof are 18! in. X 18! in. X 5! in. The top boards should be not less than i in. thick, and the side walls not less than -!- in. thick. The corners should be lock jointed and nailed both ways. (If halved joints are preferred, the timber should be at least i in. thick). The roof should be covered with non-rusting sheet metal or other waterproof material, .extending at least 1! in. down the side.
Four strips of wood 18 in. long and 1! in. x! ifucross-section, are fixed round the top inside to give a head- space of 1! in. above the crown- board. Ventilatio~ holes! in. in dia- meter are bored centrally through the sides of the roof and spacing strips, and backed with perforated zinc or non-rusting wire mesh (see Fig. 5).
SECTION RACK The outside dimensions are 181 in. X 181 in. The side walls are made of two pieces of -!- in. wood 181 in. X 4-f1r in., lock jointed and nailed both ways to end walls of i in. wood 18i in. X 4* in., giving internal dimensions of 171 in. X 161 in. X 4* in. The rack takes thirty-two sections, each 4! in. X 4! in., in four

rows of eight. The sections are held tight by a follower board, 17 in. x 4:!in. X iin., supported by two springs suitably shaped from:! in. wide strip spring steel. These springs may be obtained from appliance dealers if desired.
The sections rest on five strips, two 181 in. X l-k in. x:! in., and three 181 in. X 1 in. x:! in., the wider ones being used at the sides, equally spaced across the bottom of the i in. walls and running parallel to the-! in. walls. The strips are interspaced by four pieces of wood 3:! in. X t in. x :!in. at one end, and four pieces 3:! in. X 2 in. x:! in. at the other, the latter projecting in. inside at the follower board end to prevent the bees entering the space behind the board.
The strips and interspacing pieces provide a:! in. bee-space below the sections, increasing the overall depth of the rack to 4-& in. D-shaped finger grips are cut in the two end walls.
See page 2, and Fig. 7.
Assembly of Hive Parts When assembling the hive parts to form the individual units, it is strongly recommended that a good quality waterproof glue ( e.g., cold water casein glue) should be applied to the joints, particularly to those of the deep and shallow boxes. For additional strength and durability the parts should also be nailed to- gether, preferably with rust-proofed nails.
This advice applies equally to the assembly of hives from sets of parts bought ready-made from bee ap- pliance dealers.
FLOOR Fit the tongued and grooved, or rebated floorboards into the groovesof the side rails. Secure with nails clOven in from the outside of the side rails. Nail on the back strips, one on each side at opposite ends.
DEEP AND SHALLOW BOXES Fit the end walls into the grooves in the side walls and ¥il through the grooves, making sure that the end walls finish t in. short of the sidewalls at the bottom and t~at the runners for the frame lugs lie * in. below the top edges of the side walls. Fit and nail the four rebated end fillets, the chamfered ones at the bottom.

SECTION RACK Assemble and nail the four lock jointed walls. Turn upside down to assemble and nail the five cross strips (one wide strip at each side) and their eight interspacing pieces (with the four wide ones all at the same end of the rack). The follower board and springs are inserted at this end.

ROOF Assemble and nail the sides. Fix the four strips inside round the top.

Nail on the top boards, making sure that the assembly is square. Fit the waterproof cover and secure it with galvanized tacj(s round the sides. Bore a i in. hole centrally in each side, passing through the cover, side wall and inside strip. Back the holes with perforated zinc or wire mesh having apertures not greater than 9 .
d.t1 .
7J4 1ll. lame er or 8 1ll. square.
TIMBER AND FINISH The B.S. specification requires that the timber used for making external parts of hives shall be western red cedar, free from signs of decay or insect attack and properly air-dried. Knots, if sound and tight, are per- mffisible provided their diameter ?oes not exceed one quarter of the width of the timber and that no knot exceeds t in. diameter.
No protective finish ,is needed for western red cedar, but for hives made of softwoods other than cedar it is best to use a good brand of colo:?rless preservative fluid. Paint or dark- coloured wood preservatives are not recommended.

MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE, FISH~RIES AND FOOD, Whitehall Place, London, S. W .1 (Revised) January 1961
(Reprinted) May 1961

@ Crown copyright 1961
Printed in England by Staples Printers Ltd., Kettering and published by

— (1211) 2350/4046 K40 7161 Gp.3S2

– 24-9999