Papers of William Fisher (Barrow and Dalton co-operative societies)

Scope and Content

Records created and collected by William Fisher during his career with the co-operative movement. Including records of Barrow Co-operative Society, Dalton-in-Furness Co-operative Society, Co-operative Union correspondence course papers and a photograph.

Administrative / Biographical History

William Fisher worked at Ulverston Co-operative Society, Barrow Co-operative Society and the Cumbrian Co-operative Society between the late 1940s up until 1993 when he retired. During his time working for these societies, Fisher attended the Co-operative College and also spent time completing a correspondence course as he made his way through shop management and then departmental management. He broke the mould in the Barrow Society which tended to move senior shop assistants to the post of assistant manager and was consequently the first young man to be made a full shop manager. This didn't go down too well as he was also an Ulverston man not a Barrow man.He rose to become the grocery departmental manager in Barrow Co-operative Society before it merged with the cumbrian Society in 1984 when he became the area manager for South Cumbria.

The merger took place not long after Barrow Society was offered a prime location on a brand new retail park, the first one to be built in Barrow. William Fisher had already created the first Barrow Society superstore running from the ground floor of the warehouse called Savextra. It was only designed to operate for three years or so but went on to become the busiest shop in town for a total of fifteen years. Despite this success, it was seen as too much of a risk to take the site on the reatil park and the society walked away.

William Fisher met his wife whilst working at Barrow Co-operative Society. She had a long career working in various Co-ops after starting as a back lass chopping sugar in the late 1940s but never rising above the shop assistant level.

Source: notes of Mr Derek Fisher, son of William Fisher (2011).

Access Information

All open materials, can be viewed by previous arrangement, Monday to Friday 10am to 5pm. Contact the Archivist at: National Co-operative Archive Co-operative College Holyoake House Hanover Street Manchester M60 0AS,

Acquisition Information

Depositted by Mr Derek Fisher, son of William Fisher, 2011. Accession no. Arc/2011/17.

Other Finding Aids

No other finding aids exist.

Archivist's Note

Descripton compiled by Adam Shaw, Archivist, February 2012.

Custodial History

The records were collected and created by William Fisher during his career in the co-operative movement. The records of Dalton-in-Furness Co-operative Society he collected when Dalton Society merged with Barrow Society in 1969.

Related Material

Records of Barrow Co-operative Society held at Cumbria Archive and Local Studies Centre, Barrow.

Records of Dalton Co-operative Society held at Cumbria Archive and Local Studies Centre, Barrow.