The Southern Co-operative Convalescent Fund

Scope and Content

This collection comprises minute books and account ledgers of the Southern Co-operative Convalescent Fund.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Southern Co-operative Convalescent Fund was inaugurated in 1902 at a conference of the Southern Section of the Co-operative Union and the committee set to work in 1904. The subject of convalescent homes was inspired by the example of co-operative convalescent homes in Scotland, the north, the north-west and a fund established in 1895 by the Women's Guild. The aim was to restore to health co-operative employees and their families to enable them to continue working by providing accommodation in approved convalescent homes and expenses to cover the cost of travel to such homes. The first cases submitted were those suffering from tuberculosis. Co-operative members and their families suffering from TB benefited from a healthy stay in a rural environment. From 1910 the Southern Co-operative Convalescent Fund established a scheme for the supplying of open-air shelters, which members could hire and set up in their own gardens to help in their recovery from tuberculosis. During the First World War convalescent homes in seaside areas found themselves subject to military regulations and were given over for the care of wounded and convalescent soldiers. In 1916 grants in aid of dentistry and surgical aid were added to the benefits members could apply for. The numbers of societies subscribing to the fund varied due to the amalgamation of societies throughout the years. In 1924 eight societies were transferred to the South Western Section of the Co-operative Union and most of these joined the South-Western Fund. It was decided in 1989 there was no future for the fund due to financial concerns as the fund was finding it increasingly difficult to meet both the growing numbers of applications for optical and dental grants and the increasing cost of convalescent home fees. The fund was therefore dissolved in April 1990.

The above information was taken from The Story of Thirty Years' Work 1904-1934by Catherine Webb (CWS, 1934) p. 3-12.


Arrangement is by provenance.

Access Information

Open materials can be viewed by prior arrangement, Monday to Friday, 10am to 5pm. Contact the Archivist at:

National Co-operative Archive
Co-operative College
Holyoake House
Hanover Street
M60 0AS
Tel 0161 246 2925
Fax 0161 246 2946

Other Finding Aids

Materials listed

Archivist's Note

Compiled by Caroline Flint, National Co-operative Archives volunteer, June 2009.

Conditions Governing Use

Covered by copyright laws, a copyright declaration therefore needs to be signed.

Custodial History

The Southern Co-operative Convalescent Fund legally deposited these records with the National Co-operative Archives in April 1990.


None expected

Related Material

Related material includes the minute books and account ledgers of the South Western Section Co-operative Convalescent Fund 1914-1971.