The Fenwick Weavers go online in 2011 – just months after celebrating their 250th anniversary. The Fenwick Weavers’ Society was a professional association created in the village of Fenwick, East Ayrshire, Scotland in 1761. In 1769, the society formed a consumer co-operative for the benefit of members in 1769. The original purpose of the society was to foster high standards in the weaving craft, but activities later expanded to include collective purchasing of bulk food items and books. The latter resulted in the creation of the Fenwick Library in 1808.
This practice of collective purchasing for the benefit of members has led many to consider Fenwick Weavers’ Society the first co-operative.
The Society was reconvened in March 2008 and has been reconstituted as a co-operative, in legal form as an Industrial and Provident Society, in order to record, collect and commemorate the heritage of the Fenwick Weavers.