I’ve had some unusual animal transport jobs in the last few years, but this was a “first” and it was guaranteed to give me a buzz.

A customer requested that I collect his new hive of bees from a bee farm in West Sussex and deliver them to his home north of Lancaster in the Grizedale Forest.

And I knew just who to call on to take the hive on its 350-mile road trip – my bee-phobic husband Steve.

Steve says: “The hive contained around 4,000 bees but I was assured they would be securely contained in their hive – just as well as I didn't want a sting in the tail half way up the M6.

“I was a bit worried when Jane asked me to drive them up to Carnforth in the South Lakes as we don’t have a closed cab in the Citroen Dispatch van. I’m not the best at coping with bees and wasps generally and it was all I could do to keep calm and prevent myself swatting away as I waited to collect at Payne’s Bee Farm at Hurstpierpoint.

“Naturally there are plenty of bees in the air there. But when I saw the hive I would be carrying I was happy enough that the bees were secure.

“I had taken a water spray bottle and stopped to give the bees a drink every two hours – just by simply spraying the water onto the mesh lid covering the hive. To be honest, they seemed quite settled – not buzzing angrily – at each stop and I had made sure they had plenty of ventilation.”

“Now I've heard every bee joked under the sun from my pals in the pub: Hope they bee-hived themselves; bet you got a buzz out of that job;did you take the scenic route or make a bee-line for the drop-off point…

“But I think the best was the text I sent to Jane after dropping off the bees on a sunny afternoon...

“Swarm up north.”

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