For the last eight years, Jane and Paul Simpson have been producing Hucknall Honey – a local version of the sweet spread produced by their own bees.
Jane: “It started as a hobby but as we got better at it we started to produce honey for family and friends and then we started to supply Spelt & Rye on Annesley Road in Hucknall and it took off from there really.
"People were really interested in it and we’ve been learning all the time.”
The business is based at the couple’s home on Nottingham Road where they initially kept chickens but then got into beekeeping after speaking with some beekeepers from Warwickshire at a garden show.
Jane continued: “Paul seemed quite interested in it and so for our wedding anniversary that year, I got him a basic start-up beekeeping kit which had hive you built yourself and came with a smoker and a veil.
"So he built that and then we did a beekeeping course and then got the bees from Gloucestershire and we could hear them buzzing all the way back home and we were a bit nervous in case they got out and we’d have bees buzzing all around inside the car.
"We then thought we were going to get loads of honey and it would be marvellous but it wasn’t like that first.
"So we started to expand and get more bees and one hive became two, two became four and so on and now we’ve got nine.
"There are only five that are really productive so we will join the other four together and the bees can form a new stronger colony."
Once Jane and Paul started making honey, however, interest in their product grew and now they have a growing brand on their hands in Hucknall Honey.
Jane added: “We also do things with the beeswax too, we make candles from the wax we extract from the honey and we also make creams and balms and we’ve had a go at soap too.
"There’s so many different things you can do from the products as well.
"We’ve also won a few prizes for our honey from the British Beekeepers Association, which we’re members of, and it’s all been good fun.”