Kate Middleton is 'buzzing' as she reveals her 'vital' hobby – that's close to King Charles' heart, too

Kate's brother says beekeeping is more than just good for the environment, but for mental health, too

Kate Middleton and beekeeper Alamy 2CW3MT4 and W19HM9
(Image credit: Alamy)

This weekend past celebrated World Bee Day, and its most famous champion was Catherine, Princess of Wales, who marked the occasion by sharing a photograph of herself tending the beehives at her Norfolk home last summer. 

Showing no fear of being stung, Kate wore a full beekeeper outfit, while handling a honeycomb structure covered in bees. 

'We are buzzing about #WorldBeeDay. Bees are a vital part of our ecosystem and today is a great opportunity to raise awareness of the essential role bees and other pollinators play in keeping people and the planet healthy,' she says on Instagram, encouraging the rest of us to consider beekeeping.

Kate has spoken before about her love of beekeeping and making her own honey before, and it is well-known that the family has beehives at other royal residences: four at Buckingham Palace's gardens; two at Clarence House, both in London; and numerous at the King's home, Highgrove House in Gloucestershire. 

The Queen, who is president of the charity Bees for Development, also has beehives at her country home in Lacock, Wiltshire, and you can buy the honey produced at Fortnum and Mason to raise funds for charity.

Such is the output of the royal bees that over 300 jars went into the royal kitchens last year, ensuring the family was self-sufficient when it came to the sweet stuff. 

And royal beekeeping is not just limited to the UK: our Editor in Chief visited one of King Charles' homes in Transylvania, Romania, this past weekend, and honey taken from hives in the yard of the simple, rustic cottage, is on sale in the visitor center, too.

Kate Middleton's brother James, who has spoken in the past about his mental health struggles, also shares the Royal Family's curative enthusiasm for beekeeping (below).

'I have ten hives at Bucklebury and I’m fascinated by the little creatures. From their waggle dance to the queen laying her own body weight in eggs a day… there‘s a lot to be said about these humble little creatures,' he says in an Instagram post.

'Meditation is a wonderful tool to help with stress, anxiety, depression and doesn’t just need to be practiced sitting down!' he continues. 'But that’s not it. Bee keeping to me is a meditation, it’s a chance to escape my mind and be so consumed by something that hours can pass by without knowing it.

'Honey is one of natures finest medicines. From antibacterial properties, aiding digestion, hay fever, colds, energy and even as cure for sleeping disorders the list goes on. I have a teaspoon of honey every day and couldn’t recommend it more.
So as this little homage to the honest little honey be ends, remember raw local honey is best and yes I do get stung all the time but it's worth it!'

If this inspires you, you can invest in a basic beekeeping starter kit from Amazon; otherwise, attract bees to your garden with plants bees love.

Megan Slack
Head of Celebrity Style News

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.