Nostalgia Saturday AUGUST 10 SPREAD - For Pages 6 to 7 - Use 9 pic 300 word template

Text for Spread on Co-operative societies

Headline: Co-operative fair trading empire built on strict rules and not giving credit

Strapline: Dalton store features in displays at iconic museum which traces growth of shops with member groups which shared all the profits

A LONG tradition of Co-operative Society trading which stretches back 150 years has been maintained by communities such as Barrow, Ulverston, Dalton, Coniston, Askam and Millom.

Changing trading conditions over the decades has seen other towns and villages lose their stores - such as Haverigg, Bouth, Urswick, Backbarrow, Kirkby, Swarthmoor and Broughton.

It was all started by a group of workers who formed the Rochdale Pioneers in 1844 and whose first shop at Toad Lane now forms a museum for the international Co-operative Movement.

Its official rule book on how to run a successful shop - including a ban on giving credit - rapidly spread to Furness and around the world

Among the collections at the museum is a large wall-mounted photograph from more than 100 years ago showing one of the Dalton Co-operative stores.

Dalton's society once had everything from a bakery and a hardware store to a reading room and even a cinema.

Today it has a self-service supermarket with shopping trolleys and a car park - which would have been beyond the imagination of the Victorian iron miners who set up Dalton's Co-op to offer a small range of basic goods with any profits shared among the members.

In 1979 the Barrow Co-operative Society still had 28 shops spread throughout South Cumbria - including a department store in Abbey Road -but the days of many of them were numbered as new supermarkets sprang up such as Asda and Tesco.

Kirkby had its own thriving Co-operative Society but had asked the much bigger Barrow Society to take it over in the late 1960s.

The village lost its store on January 27 in 1979 and the 60 remaining members got three weeks' notice before the store shut down.

A branch of Derry Street, Barrow, closed at the same time.

Coniston still has its Co-operative Society in Yewdale Road, which celebrated its centenary in September 1998.

Tea and cakes were served to more than 300 members and a selection of products were on sale at 1898 prices.

Millom lost its three stores - and one at nearby Haverigg - in 1970 as a result of tough trading conditions following the closure of the town's ironworks. A store was opened in Lapstone Road several years later.