The Foundation of the Co-Operative Party

  • Sidney Pollard


At its meeting in Swansea in May 1917 the Co-operative Congress voted by an overwhelming majority to seek ‘direct representation in Parliament and on all local administrative bodies’. By October of that year a National Emergency Conference had enthusiastically endorsed this decision and had set up machinery to implement it. The Co-operative Representation Committee (later prefixed ‘National’) fought its first by-election in January 1918, opposing the official coalition candidate, and at the coupon election it fielded ten candidates, of whom one, A. E. Waterson, was successful. By 1919 the N.C.R.C. had become the Co-operative Party.


Trade Union Labour Movement Labour Party Political Involvement Direct Representation 
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  1. 9.
    Rhodes, op. cit. p. 15; Margaret Llewellyn Davies, A. Honora Enfield and Lilian Harris, Co-operation and Labour Unrest (Manchester, 1919); J. Young, in Co-operative Congress Report (1913), pp. 495–6.Google Scholar
  2. 16.
    F. M. Eddie, Co-operation and Labour Uprisings (Women’s Guild, Hull, 1912); also Joint Builders. How Co-operators and Trade Unionists should Work Together (Pamphlet, Women’s Guild, n.d. but 1912 or 1913).Google Scholar
  3. 25.
    E.M.H. Lloyd, Experiments in State Control. At the War Office and the Ministry of Food (Oxford, 1924), pp. 156 ff., 231 ff.; Beveridge, Food Control, pp. 91 ff., 123 ff., 134 ff.; Arthur Marwick, The Deluge (1965), pp. 206–9.Google Scholar
  4. 40.
    Cole, op. cit. p. 319; Barbara Smith and Geoffrey Ostergaard, Constitutional Relations between the Labour and Co-operative Parties (Hansard Society, ?1960), p. 5.Google Scholar
  5. 43.
    Webb, op. cit. pp. 269–70; W. H. Watkins, The Co-operative Party: Its Aim and Work (Manchester, 1921).Google Scholar
  6. 44.
    For a competent account, see Paul W. Kellogg and Arthur Gleason, British Labor and the War (New York, 1919), and M, A. Hamilton, Arthur Henderson (1938), pp. 168 ff.Google Scholar
  7. 48.
    The best account will be found in Webb, op. cit. pp. 275 ff. See also F. Hall and W. P. Watkins, Co-operation (Manchester, 1934), pp. 345–6; Emergency Conference Report, pp. 70 ff.; Barnes, op. cit. pp. 43–4.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Sidney Pollard 1971

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sidney Pollard
    • 1
  1. 1.University of SheffieldUK

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