Our New Campaign Launches - #ThinkWiderThanJustYourself

LINCOLN / 19th March: FREE 1/2 day workshop

LINCOLN / 19 March: FREE 1/2 day workshop for any individual or group considering a co-op for their business or organisation, how to start one and the support available:


The Hero Project CIC and Glenfield Co-op

Here is a short video here of their first community exhibition The Famous Fifty moving into the Co-op


Co-operatives East Midlands 2018 Activity Report

2018 Activity Report of Co-operatives East Midlands

Co-operatives East Midlands was established in the mid-1990s to work in tandem with the setting up of Government regional development agencies, the East Midlands Development Agency and Government Office. Since that time we have continued to work to our objective of raising awareness of co-operatives in their many forms and promoting their development.  2018 has been a very active year and the events it has organised have been well supported.  The themes for the year have been as follows:


24 January – CASE in Leicester

20 June – AGM – The Council House, Derby City Council

5 September – Central England Co-operative Society Distribution Centre, Leicester

8 November – Lincolnshire Co-operative Society


At its meeting on 20 June, David Green of Green Pepper, facilitated a session on “How to raise your profile through social media”.  Attended by Derby Carers Association. Salcare, Kirkby Rotary Club, Kirkby Rotary Club, WEA, Visual Arts & Design, Sight Support Derbyshire, Central England Co-operatives Society Southern Membership & Community Council,  Derbyshire County Council Adult Care, CASE Leicester, Central England Co-operative Society plus members of CEM.  This workshop highlighted the need for ongoing and refresh training about social media and its uses.

Green Pepper

Educational Visits

An education visit to the Rochdale Pioneers Museum and Rochdale Town Hall took place on 18 April with two coaches leaving from Derby/Nottingham and Lincoln.   Attended by 60+ co-operators and it was thoroughly enjoyed by all attending.   Many had not visited the Museum before and were able to learn about our co-operative heritage.  This also enabled different Society members to meet together from Lincolnshire Co-operative Society, the Co-operative Group and Central England Co-operative Society

Toad Lane – Rochdale Pioneers’ Museum

Joint Working

In order to establish firmer joint working between the Regional Co-op Councils of East Midlands, Co-operatives East and Co-operatives West Midlands, a meeting was held in Leicester to draw out priority areas that could support the work being done by these Councils and look at ways of putting out a clear message to the different regions.   This would enable a sharing of resources and expertise.  The event was well attended with over 40 attending, including the Co-operative College Principal, Co-operatives UK, the Co-operative Group Head of Co-operative Relations, the Co-op Foundation Charity and stakeholders interested in furthering this objective. Views were captured on flipcharts and were discussed at the November meeting of CEM with an action plan being agreed.  

Regional Co-op Council Joint Working     

 Social Media & Twitter 

Current Twitter following is 1873 following, 1032 followers.

CEM set up of a new website and subsequent updating/support has been provided by deVilliers Communications in tandem with Jenny in her role as Secretary/Treasurer. 


A review of the Constitution of CEM was discussed on 8 November following some initial research by Jane Powell on the best form of legal entity for Co-operatives East Midlands going forward. Options will be discussed in January 2019.


Grateful thanks is acknowledged and expressed from Co-operatives East Midlands to the following: Lincolnshire Co-operative Society, Central England Co-operative Society, the Co-operative Party, CASE.  There is terrific overall support from members of Co-operatives East Midlands, who often give their time freely, to ensure its success.  We continue to look at innovative ways of working effectively together, with partnerships, and to the mutual benefit of our members.

Wishing you all a very happy and successful 2019!

Jane Powell – Chair

Jenny de Villiers Secretary/Treasurer

December 2018

News from Co-operatives UK and Co-operative College

Co-operative East Midlands Newsletter | More Confidence in Co-operatives over traditional businesses

With an uncertain Brexit around the corner, consumer confidence in business has fallen to a dramatic low. New survey data released today (Thursday 23 August) reveals that just over one third of people (36%) believe that most companies in the UK are fair to consumers,1 down from 44% in 2000 and 61% in 1983 in previous offline research.2

Over three out of four people (76%) now believe that big business benefits owners at the expense of its workers. At the same time, some businesses retain high levels of consumer trust. Over six out of ten people (62%) surveyed trust co-operative businesses, such as The Co-op Group or John Lewis, which are owned by their members who all have a say in how the business is run.

“The co-operative way is to give a voice to those involved in the business and we are seeing an increase in people attracted to this way of working," Ed Mayo, Secretary General, Co-operatives UK

The YouGov survey, which updates research carried out in the last 40 years, was commissioned by Co-operatives UK, the trade body for co-operatives – a sector worth £36 billion to the UK economy.

Ed Mayo, Secretary General of Co-operatives UK, said: "High street closures, falling profits and uncertainty around Brexit makes this an extraordinarily challenging period for British business, but it will be tougher still if the UK has indeed hit a new low in terms of consumer confidence in business."

The survey found that the strongest driver for whether people trust businesses comes from being a good employer, with 72% believing this made for a trustworthy business, followed by passing on savings to customers (69%), behaving fairly (67%) and a three way tie for fourth with 55%, which was supporting their local communities or caring for the environment and sharing profits with its employees/ shareholders


“The co-operative way is to give a voice to those involved in the business and we are seeing an increase in people attracted to this way of working," added Ed Mayo. "Perhaps it is time for UK Plc, before it is too late, to recast its relationship with customers and employees in a more co-operative spirit."

The YouGov survey follows on from last month's Co-op Economy report, published by Co-operatives UK, which revealed that new co-ops are almost twice as likely as start-up companies to survive their first five years.

Social Media Campaign

Join us on Twitter and Facebook TODAY to promote co‑ops and the Co‑operative Economy report.

  • Share the report on social media using these Facebookand Twitter links
    • Use our graphics and sample tweets which can all be found here
    • Create your own messaging while incorporating the hashtag #coopdifference and linking to the report: 

Sample tweets

REVEALED - Start-up #coops twice as likely to survive first 5 years as other  businesses #coopdifference

7,226 co-ops. 13.1m members. £36.1bn turnover. We’re part of the UK’s dynamic co‑op sector: #coopdifference

If you're thinking of starting a business a new report from @CooperativesUK shows that #coops are the way to go: #coopdifference 


Co-ops Thrive

The Co‑operative Economy 2018 report is out and we can reveal that the UK's 7,226 co‑operatives have a combined turnover of £36.1bn - up more than £800 million on 2017 levels. We also have a record number of co-operative members at 13.1 million. One of the report's standout findings is that co‑ops are almost twice as likely as other businesses to survive their first five years! 

During Co‑operatives Fortnight (23 June-7 July) we now want to spread this report far and wide to show why people need to get behind co‑ops.

Read the full report here:


RCCs meeting at the Co-operative Retail Conference 9/10/11 March 2018

Jim Cooke, Head of the Foundation - gave an inspiring talk about their work with young people and co-operating together to their economic and social advantage and how grants and funding through the Foundation supports their development.  Further call for projects later in 2018.  Each Regional Council gave an overview of their activity.  Sarah Kirkpatrick from Co-operatives East, Tanya Noon from Co-operatives East Midlands and Carl Taylor from Co-operatives West Midlands.  Carl is CEO of BCHS, co-operative housing.  The meeting agreed to build their relationships to work more closely together and also with wider co-operative organisations nationally.  A set of outcomes were defined and an action plan was agreed together.

This was followed by the Co-operative Retail Conference weekend event designed to inform members of Societies of recent data and projects relating to the co-operative economy, challenges and the increasing relevance of defining and giving out a clear messaging of the “co-operative difference” on the High Street  - Steve Murrells, CEO from the Co-op, talked of greater collaboration within the sector and “marching to the same beat”.

Our member, Central England Co-operative Society, profiled their recently awarded project on social impact and return on investment to their communities and members.  A video of the project will be made available.  

Social Media Training Session and Annual General Meeting Wednesday 20 June 2018



12.30 PM - AGM

(Coffee from 9.30 am)









Welcome and Introductions


Annual Review

Appointment of Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary/Treasurer

To accept Financial Report


Meeting will close by 1.30pm


To RESERVE a place and to assist with catering arrangements, please advise Jenny de Villiers on jdevilliers@btinternet.comearly booking appreciated!

Any mobility requirements then please let me know

Grateful thanks are expressed to the members of Co-operatives East Midlands for their continued support.

The theme for the 2018 International Day of Co-operatives has been unveiled

2nd February 2018

The theme for the 2018 International Day of Co-operatives has been unveiled The theme for the 2018 International Day of Co-operatives is “sustainable consumption and production of goods and services“. It gives an opportunity for co-operatives to show how they run successful businesses while respecting our natural environment and the resources it offers. The theme…

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Jenny de Villiers

Co-ops East Midlands Secretary


07773 705552

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