Co-operators met in Manchester for the annual Co-operative Party Conference this weekend (7 - 9 September). Delegates from across the country came together to share their vision for a co-operative future.
The Conference opened on Friday 7 September. Co-operators were welcomed by Len Wardle, Chair of the Co-operative Group, Lucy Powell, Co-operative candidate for Central Manchester and Gareth Thomas, Chair of the Co-operative Party and MP for Harrow West. Len Wardle, opened the proceedings with an impassioned speech about the cabinet reshuffle and the role of women in the cabinet.
Lucy Powell, Candidate for Manchester Central, celebrated Manchester and it's co-operative movement. The morning of Saturday saw Key Note speaker Ed Balls, Shadow Chancellor and MP for Morley and Outwood, take to the stage. Following Ed Balls, the conference was split. In one discussion was Paul Monaghan, Head of Social Goals at the Co-operative Group & Paul Flowers, Chair of the Co-operative Bank discussing the International Year of Co- operatives and international co-op development. The other discussion was looking at the future shape of the Co-operative Party conference followed by the report from the Youth sector of the Party.