Haslingden Industrial Co-operative Society

Scope and Content

This series consists of records created by Haslingden Industrial Co-operative Society. The records include a requisition for revision of rules, an agreement between Haslingden Society and a building contractor,papers regarding the transfer of shares and a minute book.

Administrative / Biographical History

The first Co-operative store in Haslingden was opened in 1852 at the corner of Bury Road and Chapel Street. It was here that a small group of working men, inspired by the Rochdale Pioneers, started the Society. The shop was opened in the evenings but soon after a shopman was employed to open the shop during the afternoons.

The Society flourished and a Grocer's shop, a warehouse and a draper's shop were opened at 40-44 Blackburn Road. As membership increased, quarterly meetings moved from above the shop to the Independent Chapel, Deardengate. By 1868 the Society had paid off all loans from non-members and was opening further branch shops. By 1874 membership stood at 1205 and there were branches in grocery, clogging and butchering.

In 1868 a Building Comnmittee was established and made many purchases in Higher Dearden. The Building Committee continued to be active and began to oversee the building of whole streets of houses for members with a store in the middle. The main areas of these developments were Blackburn Road, the Rock Street area and Longshoot.

In 1876 an Education Committee was set up and newsrooms were established in Blackburn Road, Grane Road, Skye Side and Ewood Bridge. In 1897 a branch of the Co-operative Women's Guild was established.

By 1878 there were 5 Grocery Shops, 4 Cloggers, a Drapery, a Tailoring and 2 Butchering shops. In the 1890s development began in confectionary and bakery, furnishing, and a branch shop was opened in Townsend Street. In 1900 a further branch was opend at Rising Bridge and 1906 at Clough End. In 1919 a Painting and Decorating Department was started, in 1924 a painting and decorating shop was opened, and in 1927 the Flaxmoss Branch was opened.

In 1907 the Haslingden Conservative Industrial Co-operative Society amalgamted with the Haslingden Industrial Co-operative Society and in 1931 the Helmshore Co-operative and Industrial Society amalgamated with the Society. In 1964 Haslingden Industrial Co-operative Society transferred its engagements to the Co-operative Retail Services.

Sources: 'History of the Haslingden Industrial Co-operative Society', by Rhodes Boyson (1952).