Thinktank forecasting from the New Weather Institute

The New Weather Institute: Lindsay Mackie, David Boyle, Andrew Simms and Sarah Burns

A co-operatively run thinktank is drafting an ambitious blueprint for a better society. The New Weather Institute launched in November last year, set up by four colleagues. Economist David Boyle, described by Co-operatives UK General Secretary Ed Mayo as “the finest radical voice of this generation”, is the author of a host of books about history, social […]

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Britain’s only foster care co-op turns 15

The Foster Care Co-operative has grown steadily and now has contracts with 59 local authorities

The only co-operative in the UK offering homes to vulnerable children has just celebrated its 15th anniversary. In October 1999, Laurie Gregory set up the Foster Care Co-operative after over 30 years working with local authorities as a senior social worker. He took early retirement and saw the opportunity to offer an alternative to private […]

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25 years of championing consumer ethics

Ethical Consumer has won global respect for its pioneering work

Ethical Consumer has a worldwide reputation for making global businesses more sustainable through consumer pressure. Its ground breaking magazine was officially launched in 1989 and the associated website tracks the social and environmental operations of 40,000 companies behind the brands we buy every day – ranking their track record on everything from human rights to […]

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The co-operative putting ethics into lobbying

The Public Affairs Co-op team includes Paula Paterson, Emma Beeby, David Lee, Ben McLeish and Neil Cuthbert

Scotland’s first worker co-operative that offers an ethical approach to lobbying has been launched in Edinburgh. Public Affairs Co-operative is aiming to offer value-led communication strategies to organisations keen to reach the right audiences in government, parliament, media and local communities. Its client portfolio will be carefully chosen and profits shared among staff and chosen good […]

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How village shop co-ops are engaging their members

The Village Shop in Feckenham, run by local volunteers, opened in 2009

The village shop is a cornerstone of rural communities – but they are closing at the rate of 400 a year. Thankfully, the co-op movement is filling the gap, in the form of the village-owned store. There are now more than 300  in operation, compared to 27 just 20 years ago – but how do […]

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East Anglian Brewers Co-operative

Beer enthusiasts appreciate the provenance of buying beer from the farm which has produced the barley used to brew it

East Anglian Brewers Co-operative has spent 12 years building up a reputation among discerning drinkers for its artisan ales.   Founded in 2002, the co-operative was helped by start-up funding from a range of bodies including the East of England Development Agency and government organisations such as DEFRA. It now offers real ale drinkers a wide choice […]

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Topsham Ales

Topsham Ales began with 10 people, before launching a share offer which attracted over 60 members

1 August 2014 is International Beer Day. Co-operative pubs have been making a lot of headlines, but what about the pints themselves?  Community-owned brewery Topsham Ales has been in business for the past four years, with its beers sold in pubs in Exeter, Exmouth and around the south west.   Run entirely by volunteers, the […]

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Southern Co-operative’s business plan sets out sustainable future

Southern Co-operative's growth includes new stores such as Bournemouth East Howes, which opened in April

One of the UK’s largest independents has launched a business plan outlining its strategy for future success. Chief executive Mark Smith and his team at the Southern Co-operative (TSC) have just produced Our Plan 2014-2016 – a 28-page document explaining their vision to employees, members and partner organisations. The brochure is being rolled out across […]

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Meet the new chief of Supporters Direct

Exeter City is one of several UK clubs that are majority-owned by their supporters

Supporters Direct, the organisation that helps sports fans become involved in the ownership and running of their clubs, has a new man in charge of its team. Chief executive Robin Osterley is taking up the role after 16 years at Making Music, the National Federation of Music Societies. During his time as CEO at the […]

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