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Brighton bee hotel planned for Stanmer Park
A Brighton artist has created a hotel which is sure to create a buzz - because it has been designed for bees.
Mia Underwood is hoping her Bee Hotel could be installed in Stanmer Park next spring.
Unlike other businesses, bees will come and go for free from the 7ft high honeycomb, which will be made of wooden hexagons.
“The idea is that bees will drop their babies at the hotel,” said the Roundhill Crescent artist.
“They’ll leave their eggs in holes in the wood and when it starts to get warm the eggs will hatch.
“It’s very wild up at Stanmer Park, and it’s the perfect place for the hotel and for people to come and learn about bees.”
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The 37-year-old mother of two wants to stage an opening event where both children and adults will collect the bamboo and logs needed to fill the giant hexagons.
There will also be a talk from Sussex University’s professor of bees, David Goulson.
“We’re hoping the installation will make a huge home for many local bees,” Mia said.
The wildlife artist, whose father George Underwood designed album covers for David Bowie, has become more and more concerned about the plight of bumble bees.
She said: “I don’t want people to think that this is just an airy fairy art exhibition.
“There’s an important message behind all of this which sometimes gets lost.”
Ms Underwood is teaming up with Sussex University’s specialist social insects team and a PHD student will monitor activity at the hotel.
“I’m fascinated by learning about how bees affect us,” she said.
“The whole environment we live in could vanish because of their endangerment.”
The artist wants to encourage school classes up to the Plant Plot at Stanmer Park, which will host the bee hotel.
“We don’t want to scare people off by making it too scientific and hard hitting,” she said.
“We want to make it friendly and welcoming, but for people to walk away with an important message.”
“Art in itself is very welcoming.”
Ms Underwood is seeking funding for the £600 worth of untreated timber she will need to build the bee hotel.
Anyone wishing to get involved in the project should contact Ms Underwood at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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