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Bentley redefines its flying bee


Dominik Wilde

Bentley has brought a whole new meaning to the term "Flying B" with the introduction of flying, erm, "bees" to its factory in Crewe. Two hives homing a total of 120,000 British Apis Mellifera bees have been installed onto the factory site, which borders the Cheshire countryside and offers the perfect habitat for the insects.

The pair of national hives, which have been installed with the help of local beekeepers, have the ability to produce around 15 kilograms (33 pounds) – or approximately 50 jars – of honey. But why is a car company venturing into beekeeping? Well, it's all down to improving their environmental impact.

"Although our Pyms Lane site is over 80 years old, we’re constantly looking for ways to improve our environmental footprint and achieve our goal of carbon-neutral operations," said Peter Bosch, Bentley’s Member of the Board for Manufacturing. "We already have the largest solar car port in the UK on our site - which means that all of our electricity use is now either solar or certified green – so we’ve also started to look at ways we can use our site to increase local biodiversity."

"Bees populations are in decline in the UK, so installing two hives to help boost biodiversity is a great way to make use of the grassland at the edge of the site," Bosch added. "Our 'flying bees' are honeybees that have been bred by local beekeepers with over fifty years’ experience. With their help, we’re checking on them every week and it’s great to see that they’re already starting to produce the first Bentley honey."

Photo: Bentley