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About the weavers

The Fenwick Weavers Society was reconstituted on 14th March 2008.

The formal objective of the Society is: ‘’To promote the original Fenwick Weavers Society as the first co-operative enterprise for which we have full records.’’

The original Fenwick Weavers Society was founded in 1761, and began co-operative trading in foodstuffs in 1769. It came out of the radical tradition of the Covenanters ( many of whom are buried in the churchyard ). The Society was disbanded in 1873, and it’s minute books are held in the national Library of Scotland.

The modern day Fenwick Weavers Society is a not- for -profit co-operative company limited by guarantee. Membership is open to any resident from Fenwick and any member of a bona fide co-operative enterprise or federation.

The management of the Society is in the hands of an elected voluntary Board of Directors.

A commemorative event to mark the 250th Anniversary of the founding of the world’s first co-operative, The Fenwick Weavers Society, was held at a special celebration in Fenwick on Monday 14th March 2011.

Global Leaders of Co-operatives, together with leaders from civil and political life, attended the event in Fenwick Parish Kirk where the original charter was signed. Those attending the event also signed a 2011 charter reaffirming their commitment to the vision of the original Weavers of 1761, and to the values and principles of the Co-operative movement.

John Smith, founder of the Fenwick Weavers Society , said ‘’the success of this event recognised and celebrated the pivotal contribution made by the original Weavers to the global co-operative movement‘’.

Fenwick is increasingly on the global co-operative map. The Weavers of 1761 founded the first co-operative for which records are held 250 years ago, but their legacy is stronger than ever.