Ref NoA-3-B
TitleBarnsley British Co-operative Society
DescriptionCollection includes committee minute books, financial and employee records, work procedures and trade union membership. For further records of the C.R.S. Dairy Department see also collection A-1163-B
Access_ConditionsAccess to employee records is restricted. Please contact a member of staff for further information.
Admin_HistoryAugust 1861 saw the foundation of the Barnsley British Co-operative Society following George Adcroft moving from Lancashire to work at Oaks Colliery in Barnsley. George Adcroft had been a member of the Rochdale Pioneers Society which had been established in 1844 and together with others they became the 'nine men of vision'. They met at Tinker's Temperance Hotel, May Day Green and decided to start the Barnsley Co-operative by saving one shilling per week. By March 1862 they had raised £30 from 68 members and the first store was opened on 13th March, 1862 at 16 Market Street. In 1865 the dwelling house, shop and grounds were bought on Wellington Street which expanded into further outlets for the Society. By 1869 a further 6 branches situated in outlying districts were opened - the first being at Dodworth in 1863. This expansion continued in that branches were opened in most of the outlying districts and in 1885 the whole of the Perseverance Estate had been acquired and it was here that the Society opened its own flour mill followed by the Society's bakery, abattoir, cold air store and mineral water factory. In 1962 the Society was so successful that it had departments ranging from butchery, dairy, restaurant, fashion, furnishings, decorating and pharmacy to having its own travel agents. Further expansion occurred when B.B.C.S. began acquiring other societies. This included in April 1966 the Scissett Industrial Co-operative Society and later in January 1968 Skelmanthorpe Co-operative Society. In March 1971 the Barnsley British Co-operative Society merged with Co-operative Retail Services as 'it was considered by the directors and officials that the time had come to improve future prospects by entry into C.R.S, enabling B.B.C.S to play an even worthier role in the strengthening and development of the co-operative movement'. In 2001 Co-operative Retail Services (C.R.S.) merged with Co-operative Wholesale Services (C.W.S.) to form the Co-operative Group.
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