Rochdale to host Co-operative College anniversary conference

Speakers will include Angela Rayner MP (shadow education secretary) and Professor Esther Gicheru (Co-op University of Kenya)

The Co-operative College will continue to mark its 100th anniversary with a centenary conference in Rochdale, the birthplace of the modern-day co-operative movement.

The three-day event will take place on 26-28 November 2019 at Rochdale’s town hall, featuring five plenary sessions, seven keynote addresses, 12 workshops and a commemorative book launch.

The conference will explore how co-operative education can challenge inequalities, empower individuals and pose radical solutions to some of society’s biggest challenges. Speakers will include Professor Esther Gicheru, Co-op University of Kenya; Dr Sonia Novkovic, St Mary’s University, Canada; Andy Burnham, mayor of Greater Manchester; and Angela Rayner MP, shadow education secretary.

Simon Parkinson, chief executive and principal of the Co-operative College, said: “We can’t wait to welcome delegates from across the world to our centenary conference, the flagship event of our centenary year. As we approach the 175th anniversary of the Rochdale Pioneers and the birth of the modern co-operative movement in the UK, we are delighted to be holding this prestigious event in Rochdale.

“The challenges we’re facing today are no less profound than those faced by those original 28 pioneers and history teaches us that through working together, co-operative education can act as a catalyst towards building a fairer world.”

The conference will also include an inaugural gala dinner and awards ceremony celebrating the College’s 100-year history. Tickets for the three-day event including the gala dinner cost £350 – with 100 tickets available for £100 available to College members on a first-come, first-served basis.