The Co-operative College, National Co-operative Archive and Rochdale Pioneers Museum have spent this year working together to develop some exciting new resources exploring various themes in co-operative history, from co-operative politics to the history of the Co-operative Wholesale Society (CWS) to co-operatives during the First World War.
Using funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, the arcHive project is making artefacts and documents in the archive accessible to a wider audience, hoping to engage with new audiences such as Co-operative Party branches and education Trade Union activists along with school students and members of the general public. Although the resources make use of heritage assets, the project has drawn on the strengths of the whole College and cross-team working, including the expertise of the Co-operative Learning & Development team in developing innovative learning resources.
Each resource is based on the principle of a timeline, and all resources are multi-level, meaning users can go into as much or as little detail as they wish. Most importantly, all resources are free!
Delegates at the Co-operative Party conference were among the first to explore the new resources, and positive feedback has been received. Nick Herepath, Heritage Lottery Fund Project Officer, described the resources as ‘excellent’, saying: “I like the platform – it is easy to navigate and flows really well.”
Resources ‘Politics for the People’ and ‘A Colossus of Empire’ are now available at www.archive.coop/hive, and the rest will be placed online soon. Follow @explorearcHive on Twitter for up-to-date news as well as tweets revealing some of the fascinating facts and documents the project has unearthed.