SCHOOL bosses couldn’t bee-lieve it when a huge swarm of bees got a little too close for comfort to staff and children.

A HELPFUL beekeeper came to the rescue of Beauchamps High School who needed a huge bee swarm removing from their grounds.

A swarm of honeybees had attached themselves to a tree at Beauchamps High School, Wickford, leaving bosses busily looking for a solution.

Eventually, they turned to hobby beekeeper Graeme Ellis, who was asked to remove the swarm as soon as possible.

He said: “It’s the second time I’ve been contacted by the school in the past year.

“The school caretaker told me there was an urgency to remove them.”

He added: “I took them to North Fambridge where I’ll look after them.

“The stragglers should have dispersed by the following morning once the smell of the queen has disappeared.”

Mr Ellis added that he’d been inundated with complaints about bees from residents and has seen a rise in posts on social media about bee swarms in houses, buildings and gardens.

He added: “I received three calls [on Tuesday] about different swarms – one was from Laindon and another one was a weird one where the swarm had moved into a shipping container.

“Unfortunately I’ve now run out of equipment.

“The council won’t do anything about them and neither do pest control.”

The enthusiast insisted that bee swarms should not be treated as pests, adding: “They only become a pest if they’re left for too long in one place or if they find themselves in a chimney.

“They can get bigger and bigger every year if they’re not removed properly.

“If the queen is left behind then they just come back and swarm again.”

Dave Sheekey, premises manager at Beauchamps High school, said: “We cordoned off the area as it was by the front of the school where the children sometimes sit.

“We called the beekeeper as he’s come to us before and he came within the hour.

“There was a debate whether they were wasps or bees, but we had to be careful as the bees are endangered.

“The students weren’t in danger as they were in lessons and it was dealt with in the afternoon, before they finished at the end of the day.”