On Tuesday 26th February, the Radstock Co-operative Society and Somerset Coalfield Life at Radstock Museum were delighted to welcome Her Royal Highness The Countess of Wessex on a visit to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Radstock Co-operative Society and the 20th anniversary of the Museum becoming established in the Victorian former Market Hall.
Her Royal Highness toured the Museum accompanied by Mr Don Morris, CEO of the Radstock Co-operative Society and by Dr Nick Hall, Chair of Trustees at Radstock Museum. Radstock Museum hosted the visit during which the Countess was given a tour of the exhibition which plots Radstock Co-op’s history and the contribution it has made to the local community over several generations. The Countess also met children from local primary schools as they settled down for lessons in the Victorian classroom adorned in period dress. There was also a trip to the blacksmith’s forge and a miner’s cottage before continuing on to the authentic co-op shop which was staffed by a museum volunteer and co-op store colleagues.
Don Morris, chief executive of the Radstock Co-op said, ‘We are absolutely delighted that Her Royal Highness The Countess of Wessex has visited our town centre. It was a great honour and privilege to be able to share with the Countess our Society’s history and the integral part it and its colleagues and members, both past and present, have played in supporting the local community. We are proud of our heritage which was borne out of the need to support the local mining community. As a co-operative business, we aim to help communities thrive and prosper. We do this in a number of ways including fund-raising and donating to charities and good causes. To ensure that we can continue to serve Radstock Town through the delivery of a firstclass shopping experience, we have submitted plans to redevelop the site which is home to the Radco superstore to include retail units, residential housing and office space with communal areas and open spaces. We were delighted to be able to share our plans of the proposed site with the Countess during her visit.”