Wednesday, 18 September 2019

Introducing our new and enlarged team

SCS CIC has substantially enlarged its worker team with no less than four new recruits. Alongside Alex and Caitlyn, who will continue to work on co-ordination and the retail and food areas respectively, we have:
From left: Alex (seated), Steve, Alice, Mo, Caitlyn, Lina
Mo Critchlow, playing a key role in Devon and developing our nationwide connections;
Lina Hernandez who is our spreadsheet maestro and will ensure all our clients have immaculate record keeping systems;
Steve Howell will be working mainly on housing and property development;
and Alice Ling, who will focus on energy co-ops, Cascade training and agriculture.
This is all made possible by the support of social investors in Somerset Development Workers Co-op.
We have a share offer open now, with 4.5% interest and Enterprise Investment Tax Relief worth 30%. It's a full risk investment for at least three years, but if that doesn't put you off then do please request an offer document by emailing

Monday, 15 July 2019

Shipping containers at the Canalside: a co-operative opportunity for Bridgwater

The Container Home Pilot Project led by Robin Howell (and supported by The Glastonbury Trust and Sedgemoor DC among others) has reached a milestone; the first two finished units are ready to provide accommodation for farm workers.
We'd like to invite you to a breakfast event (pastries will be provided) at the Canalside Centre, Bridgwater to see these extraordinary re-purposed shipping containers while they are on display, and find out more about what could come next - a workers co-operative that produces them at scale for use on sites where conventional housing development would be impossible.
If you are interested in solutions to the housing crisis; in a career in a workers co-operative; in co-operative solutions for urban farming, land use and transportation; and in homes fit for a climate emergency; join us at 9.00am on the 22nd.
Download the flyer here, and show your interest on our Facebook Event page.

Wednesday, 10 July 2019

Job applications are now live!

Somerset Co-op Services is now recruiting - with a climate emergency, a co-operative renaissance and a public service crisis all unfolding there is both need and opportunity for what we do. We are aiming to build our team up to between four and six people (probably a mix of part time and full time) based primarily in Taunton but with scope for flexible working. It is office based and ranges from detailed orientated administration of computerised records to complex business planning and community organising roles.
We like to think that we are breaking new ground and reinventing the whole idea of the 'co-operative development worker' for the 21st century. It has something in common with small business advice and consultancy; something in common with accountancy and organisational analysis; and something in common with community development and regeneration. But essentially it is about building and strengthening a social movement.
You can go to our 'Jobs and Investment' page where you will find all the information - job descriptions for the different roles and an application form. Remember, the deadline is August 14th!

Thursday, 27 June 2019

Happy Co-operatives Fortnight! Here's our newsletter - the first in a while - with news of a gathering of Somerset Co-ops on July 2nd, jobs in and around Taunton working for co-ops, why we should invest in co-op development, and the data on swimming between Tadcaster and Minehead.

Wednesday, 26 June 2019

SCS is hiring!

A new economy is taking shape – social, ethical, co-operative businesses are emerging in sectors from housing to energy, finance to agriculture and IT to transport. They are empowering workers, customers and communities; they are cutting carbon emissions and regenerating deprived neighbourhoods. But none of this happens by accident.
SCS is one of the UK’s leading co-operative development bodies, driving innovation in people powered business. We are expanding and we need skilled, dynamic and self-motivated workers to join our Taunton based team.
We are looking for co-operative development workers able to plan, organise and project manage enterprise start-ups; fundraisers able to seek resources from charities, statutory bodies and social investors; administrators able to use a wide range of software and interfaces to process data and maintain records; and part-qualified accountants  keen to build up their skills in the more-than-profit sector.
Salaries range from £25k - £34k FTE depending on skills and experience; part time workers (16 hrs pw – 36 hrs pw) are welcome, and flexible working, pension, family friendly employment and more are on offer.

Application deadline is July 20th.

Tuesday, 3 July 2018

Everyday Participation
Free workshop 12.30 – 4pm Tuesday 3rd July at 10 East Reach, Taunton
Please make sure that your co-op or social enterprise is represented at this crucial event! Everyone is welcome, but for members of SCS CIC or SDWC this will also include the Annual General Meeting.
The new everyday participation toolkit is essential for any membership organisation. Deeper engagement by stakeholders + processes that generate new ideas = better social impacts. We need to go beyond the formalities of membership and use the seven modes of membership to make participation real.
All this, and the future of Co-op development in Somerset and beyond
12.30 – 1.30pm: Lunch
1.30 – 1.45pm: Discussion on co-op development in our region
1.45pm - 2pm: AGM business
2pm – 3pm: Everyday participation – training, activities and discussion
3pm – 4pm: Networking
For details and RSVP (or to participate via video conference) please call 0300 456 2265 or email

Monday, 25 June 2018

Co-operatives fortnight 2018

I'm actually posting this after the event on the front cover of our newsletter has taken place - by all accounts it was a fabulous success with over sixty people present.
However, the remaining events are very much all to play for as I write:
Street stall in Yeovil, Thursday June 28th: 12noon - 1.45pm Mudford Road Co-op Store,
2pm - 4pm Middle Street (near Primark). Please join us to raise awareness of co-ops in South Somerset and get some new members signed up to them! Featuring Southern Co-operative, South Somerset Community Energy and the Ecological Land Co-op.
Annual General Meeting of Somerset Co-operative Services CIC (and Somerset Development Workers Co-op) featuring a workshop on Everyday Participation. Tuesday 3rd July at 10 East Reach - more to follow on this later in the week.
Street stall in Taunton, Wednesday July 4th: 1pm - 4pm Fore Street (outside Next). Please join us to raise awareness of co-ops in Taunton Deane and get some new members signed up to them! Featuring Somerset Co-op CLT, Brendon Energy and Somerset Community Credit Union.
You can download the whole newsletter by clicking here.