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Mellifera: The Dancing Bees at Fortnum's




It's a not-so-little known secret that, buzzing about at the top of our Piccadilly home, is a colony of bees who produce our delicious honey.


Now before you jump to any conclusions: no, our bees have not created something for this year's London Design Festival. However, they have served as the inspiration for a very spectacular piece soon to appear at our 181 address.


The vision of French architect Arthur Mamou-Mani, Mellifera: The Dancing Bees is a breathtaking piece made up of swirling 3D printed beehives that will dance through our atrium to an illuminated ceiling made of bioplastics and will showcase advances in material innovation and technology.


Made from fermented sugar, the components of the installation are fully compostable and, in the spirit of the circular economy, will be reusable after the event. 


As passionate beekeepers ourselves, some alarming information inspired us to be a part of this installation. A combination of factors, including habitat loss, climate change and pesticide use has seen bee numbers devastated in recent years. Research suggests that the UK has lost an average of 11 species of bee and hoverfly between 1980 and 2013 in every square kilometer of the country.


Individual components will be on sale following the Festival to raise funds to support the UK's bee populations, with 25% of all proceeds donated to Bees for Development. So make sure you pop in and see the spectacle itself, and say a little thank you to our busy bees.