Might I suggest you join the local group of the Cornwall Beekeepers Association. Look up their website for the nearest location to you. At this time of year, most of the meetings are outdoors - for instance my group in Liskeard meets twice a month at our apiary and we perform various manipulations (inspections, artificial swarms, comb change, etc.) which gives newbees the chance to handle bees (and occasionally get stung). There may be an opportunity to acquire bees via the CBKA members or at least get advice about where to buy locally bred bees. There is quite a strong movement in Cornwall towards having local bees rather than imported bees from Italy, Germany, or Greece, etc.
The first book I bought was The Haynes Bee Manual, which I found very easy to follow.
All the best with your Flow hive.