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Burslem and District Industrial Co-operative Society Ltd - 1957 advert

Burslem and District Industrial Co-operative Society Ltd - 1957 advert

Stoke-on-Trent City Handbook 


The Co-op Movement had its roots in Brighton where a local reformer, Dr William King, advocated the principles of self-help trading in home produced goods. In 1844 a group of Rochdale textile workers set up an independent business encouraging cooperation and providing the customer with a dividend on each purchased item, the accumulation of which went into shared profit.

One of the earliest co-op traders in Stoke-on-Trent was a Burslem potter James Colclough who opened Stoke-on-Trent’s first co-operative store, in Newcastle Street Burslem. Meanwhile another Co-op pioneer, James Stanway, a manager at Royal Doulton, encouraged Fred Hayward to attend the infant Co-op meetings. In 1902 Fred became the company’s unpaid part-time secretary and helped the organisation to become the most successful mutual commercial enterprise Stoke-on-Trent has ever known.

“From 1902 until his retirement in 1935 Sir Fred Hayward remained at the top of the Co-op movement in North Staffordshire. He helped to execute its rise from a single Burslem bread shop into a production and retail industry that affected the lives of possibly every family in the region.

Whether you celebrated your birth or wedding at Co-op restaurants, or were buried from a Co-op chapel of repose; whether you wore clothes tailored by the Co-op, rode Co-op bicycles, drank Co-op milk or went on a Co-op holiday, life-long interaction with the Co-op throughout the 20th century was inevitable from cradle to grave. And Sir Fred Hayward was at the head of this movement until he was incapacitated by poor health that led to his death 1944.”

previous Burslem co-op building in Queen Street,
previous Burslem co-op building in Queen Street

photo: Dec 2008

related pages...

Index page for the Co-operative Society in Stoke-on-Trent