Swansea Friendly Societies

Scope and Content

Introductory note, 1992; Swansea Friendly Societies Prospectuses, 1764-1848

Administrative / Biographical History

Around 1800 there were about 5000 societies under the Friendly Societies Act of 1793, most of them purely local to towns and villages. They are not to be confused with Orders which arose in the latter half of the 18th century and early 19th century. Many of the early Societies were financially unsound unlike the Orders and therefore short lived, as were these Swansea societies for the most part. The original prospectuses are in a fragile condition and were insalubrious to handle before they were fumigated at the library of Swansea University. Photocopies are therefore included with the originals to be consulted in the searchroom, (notes from David Painting, Hon. Librarian of RISW, Feb. 1992, RISW 1).


This catalogue lists the items chronologically under the headings stated in Scope and content.

Conditions Governing Access

No restrictions.

Acquisition Information

The records were originally held at The Royal Institution of South Wales, Swansea. They were transferred to West Glamorgan Archive Service in the Spring of 2004 as part of The Royal Institution of South Wales Collection.


Compiled by Katie Millien for the West Glamorgan Archive Service.

Other Finding Aids

A hard copy of the catalogue is available at the West Glamorgan Archive Service. The catalogue can be accessed online. Detailed catalogue

Conditions Governing Use

Usual copyright regulations apply.

Appraisal Information

All records transferred to the West Glamorgan Archive Service have been retained.


Accruals are not expected.