Greenfield Co-operative Society

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FORWORD.


THE accompanying sketch of our Society makes no attempt to record all its doings.  Many things are left unrecorded which some of our friends may think ought to have found a place in these pages; and, doubtless, some things are included which others will think might have been left out.  The writer’s difficulty has not been to find material, but rather to select what seemed most appropriate.  His aim has been to perpetuate in particular the memory of those early workers who gave so freely of their best thought and effort to establish our Society on a firm and lasting basis.  How long and arduously they toiled he has tried to portray; how well they succeeded is proved by the Society's existence and position to-day.

    Co-operation is a unifying force in a community.  Under its beneficent sway all the usual dividing lines of creed and party seem to disappear, and men of all creeds and parties, and of no creed or party in particular, are drawn together by a common interest and work together for the common good.

    This truth is well exemplified in the following pages, as those who know personally the leading characters herein portrayed will readily see at a glance themselves.

    One of the minute books is lost, and several of the books extant contain but a broken and imperfect record of the doings of the Committee during the periods they are supposed to cover.

    It was soon discovered that no complete tables of sales and membership, or lists of Committee-men and officials were possible.  Those given at the end of this sketch are as near to fact as patient and careful research can make them.  Not every Society is fortunate enough to have eleven of its originators alive at its Jubilee.  What a contrast the Greenfield of to-day must be to the Greenfield of 1856 as it lives in their memories!  Let us be thankful to the Great Giver of all good for all the blessings that have come to the dwellers in our "Beautiful Greenfield" through our Society and other beneficent agencies, and turn our faces hopefully to the future, confident that a movement that has accomplished so much in the past will accomplish much more in the near future for the uplifting of our fellow-men.

    The writer’s thanks are due to Mr. Dan Holden, Manager, Mr. Thomas Worth, and members of the General and Educational Committees for willing help in various ways in the work of compiling these pages; also to Mr. W. S. Hallsworth, the Jubilee Secretary, and to my son, Mr. Edwin Lawton, for assistance in preparing copy for the press, and in revision of proofs.

    Special thanks are also tendered to the families of our notable friends who have readily responded to our requests for photos, and supplied other matter of great use to the writer in his work.

DAVID LAWTON.


Spring Grove,
          May, 1906.


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CONTENTS.


I. ACROSS THE YEARS

II. O
RGANISATION — 1857-60

III. D
EVELOPMENT — 1861-70

IV. C
HANGES AND DIFFICULTIES — 1871-80

V. E
XTENSIONS AND IMPROVEMENTS — 1881-90

VI. C
ONSOLIDATION — 1881-1900

VII. A
DVANCEMENT — 1901-06

VIII. O
UR NOTABLES

IX. C
OTTAGE BUILDING

X. E
DUCATION

XI. P
ENNY BANK

XII. A
T THE END OF THE YEARS

________


APPENDIX:

LIST OF OFFICIALS

FINANCIAL

CHART OF COMMITTEE

JUBILEE ODE


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ILLUSTRATIONS

(A. & H. Hanson, Photo., Greenfield)

GENERAL COMMITTEE

HEYTOP, PRESS SHOP, PICCADILLY, SPRING GROVE,
JOSEPH WOOD


GROCERY PREMISES

HALL AND SHOPS

PRESIDENT, MANAGER, SECRETARY, AUDITORS

PORTRAITS ― ELEVEN PIONEERS

PORTRAITS

PORTRAITS

BERRY STREET


TERRACE, SPRING GROVE

EDUCATION COMMITTEE

EMPLOYEES


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"Let not Ambition mock their useful toil,
     Their homely joys, and destiny obscure;
 Nor Grandeur hear with a disdainful smile
     The short and simple annals of the poor."

Gray.


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The following book was kindly contributed by Eddie Shaw
of Crewe, Cheshire.

 

 

Printed and Bound by
C.W.S. Printing Works
Longsight, Manchester


 

Our President
Mr. Sydney Smith

 

FOREWORD


I regard it as a very great honour and privilege to be the President of the Greenfield Society during its centenary year, and it is with the greatest pleasure that I write this foreword to this short history of the Society.

We are deeply indebted to our Secretary, Mr. Hobson, for having written it, and I feel sure it will be read by our members with great pleasure and interest.

The Society began in a very humble way and with few resources.  Those who established it had perhaps little idea that they were laying the foundations of an organisation which would continue for 100 years to exercise such a beneficial influence among the people of our village.

During the past century I believe the Society has played a great part in the lives of its members not only in supplying them with the goods they need but also in rendering them the many and various services which are described in this booklet.

So far as I can see there is no reason why we should not continue to meet the needs of our members for many years to come providing we all remain loyal to the principles underlying our great movement.


S. SMITH, President.

October, 1956.


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CONTENTS

FOREWORD

T
HE FIRST EXPERIMENT

T
HE GOLDEN AGE


C
O-OPERATIVE SERVICES

W
ORLD WAR II.

E
DUCATION AND HOUSING

T
HE STORY OF GRASSCROFT

A C
OMPARISON

L
OOKING BACK



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

Our President

Old Press Shop

Hey Top

Piccadilly

Officers of the Society

Spring Grove

Manager and Secretary

Employees of the Society

Present Central Premises

Thirty Years' Service

Society's Transport



 

Ed. ― The Greenfield Co-operative Society merged with the Oldham Society in 1969, which  is now part of the Co-operative Group.

 



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