About Us

North Kildare Beekeepers' Association

In 1961, NKBKA was established with 8 members and one of those founding members, Peter O’Reilly became Ireland’s first honey judge in 1980.  The association has grown strongly over the years and is now one of the largest beekeeping associations in Ireland.

NKBKA manages 3 apiaries for the benefit of the members. These are located at:

  • Milltown, (Moved from The Curragh in 2022).
  • Barnhall, in Leixlip.
  • Russborough House walled garden (The Peter O’Reilly Training Apiary)

Members are encouraged to visit these apiaries on a weekly basis to improve their bee keeping skills and learn from the more senior members.

Committee Members for 2023

Chairman: Vincent Lernihan
Vice-Chair: John Byrne
Secretary: Ann Ryan
Treasurer: Sean Dunne
Membership Secretary: Marion O’Driscoll
Education: Colm ONeill
Bee health: tba
Irwin Bannon
Cindy Collins
John Lennon
Paula Somers-Kennedy
Pat Winters

Honorary Life Members

Peter O’Reilly
​Caroline Crone

Meet the Committee

Vincent Lernihan

Vincent lives in Edenderry, Co. Offaly and a friend  introduced him to beekeeping over 6 years ago. 

Vincent is an avid runner, competing in mini marathons and completed the Dublin City Marathon in 2019.

Vice Chairman
John Byrne

John joined the committee of NKBKA in 2012, and is the outgoing Chairperson of NKBKA.
John lives and works as a bookseller in Maynooth. He has been an active and enthusiastic beekeeper for over 12 years.
It all started from his interest in nature and a need to get a constant supply of good local honey.

Ann Ryan

Ann lives in Twomilehouse and joined the association in 2019. With her sister Marion, she did the Beekeeping Course and they received their first Nucs in July 2019. They now have 4 hives which they keep in Marion’s garden.

Ann joins the committee for 2022 as Secretary.

Sean Dunne

Sean lives in Newbridge, Co Kildare. He is retired and has been bee keeping for 5 years and currently has 6 hives. He joined the committee in 2020.

Marion O'Driscoll

Marion lives in Johnstown, Naas and became a beekeeper in 2019 after completing the NKBKA beginners course.  Marion manages 4 hives with her sister Ann and is more committed to keeping bees for their positive environmental impact rather than honey production. Marion joined the committee in 2022. 

Colm ONeill

Colm has been a beekeeper for over 50 years and a member of NKBKA
for almost as long.
As our education officer his aim it to pass on the knowledge he has gained over the years to new and existing beekeepers alike.

Vincent Lernihan

Vincent will be assisted by Gabriel Todarca and ME Beatty.

The PRO officer role involves organizing public events including Castletown house, Russborough Garden Show and the Kildare Play Day.

Irwin Bannon

Irwin looks after our Russborough House Apiary. His song, to the tune of the Wild Rover, goes; Has been a beekeeper for many’s the year. Stung lots of times yet never the tear. Brood-pollen-nectar and queens to the fore apiaries-hives-frames and more.

Cindy Collins

Cindy always wanted bees, but never had the time.  An opportunity in 2017 to see a hive up close … and then she was hooked.  Cindy joined NKBKA in 2018, and started with a Nuc in July which is now 4 hives.  She enjoys watches her bees coming and going during the summer evenings.

John Lennon

Paula Somers-Kennedy

Paula joined the Association & became a beekeeper in 2017. She joined the committee & became Treasurer in 2018.
Although busy with family & working fulltime, she loves any outdoor activity that immerses her in the wonders & beauty of nature.

Pat Winters

Pat lives in Blessington, Co. Wicklow and joined the association in 2019.  Receiving his first Nuc in June of that year he now has several hives and gets great satisfaction from the challenges of queen rearing, honey processing, making hive parts and home made plywood Nucs. 

Newsletter Editor - Lucy Fitzpatrick

Hi, my name is Lucy and I am currently a student. I have been beekeeping since 2013 with my dad and was a committee member in 2020 and 2021.

Having joined the association, I  helped out with many of the public events and have spoken at the beginners course.