Barnsley British Co-operative Society

Scope and Content

This series consists of records that were created by Barnsley British Co-operative Society. These include records of the General Committee, the Education Committee, the Drapery Committee, the Publicity Committee, the Building Committee, the Corn Mill Department, Builders Supplies (Barnsley Ltd), the New Model Dairy, the Employees Operatic & Dramatic Society, the Traffic Department, the Arcadian Restaurant, the jewellers, the National Guild of Co-operators (Barnsley District) and the National Co-operative Branch Managers' Association (Barnsley branch). There are also records relating to members, employees, and social events and photographs.

Administrative / Biographical History

Barnsley British Co-operative Society was started in Aug 1861 by nine men; William Morley, George Adcroft, John Corless, William Hildred, James Kaye, Benjamin Pinder, James Wray, Robert Steel, and William Tinker. They each decided to save 1 shilling a week until by March 1862 they had collected £30 from 68 members.The first store was opened on Mar 13th 1862 at 16 Market Street.

In Oct 1862 they moved to new larger premises at the junction of Wellington and New Street and on 11 Jul 1864 they purchased this property. Growth was rapid and they branched out into various areas including bread and confectionary, butchery, fish and fruit, milk and dairy, restaurant,drapery and fashions,footwear, furnishing, electrical, jewellery, pharmacy, travel, funeral, and optical. In 1962, a hundred years after the society's formation, there were 140,000 members. In 1971 the society joined the Co-operative Retail Services (Northern Region).

Source: 'The Coronation History of the Barnsley British Co-operative Society Ltd 1862-1902', (1903), and 'The Barnsley British Co-operative Society Ltd. A Century of Service', (1962).