Robert Owen: Ceremony marks social reformer's work
Published: 12th May 2012 11:23:24
Landmark essays written by the so-called father of the co-operative movement are being remembered in a special ceremony in Powys.
Robert Owen, who was born in Newtown in 1771, started work on his writings, A New View of Society, 200 years ago.
The Robert Owen Museum said they inspired change and improved working conditions for hundreds of people.
The museum is holding the event on Saturday, to mark what would have been his birthday on 14 May.
People, along with a choir and Newtown Silver Band, are gathering at Owen's grave in the Powys town.
Pat Brandwood, the curator of the Robert Owen Museum, described him as the first socialist, who believed in co-operation, sharing and educational reform.
"Two hundred years ago Robert Owen started work on a series of articles and lectures. He is known as the father of the co-operative movement and the first socialist," she said.
Community had always been there, but creating the right community was the basis for a better world, he felt”
"He believed what formed character was the type of community a person was brought up in.
"Community had always been there, but creating the right community was the basis for a better world, he felt."
Owen was born in Newtown on 14 May, 1771.
As an adult he moved to London, Manchester and later Scotland, where he famously transformed the New Lanark mill town for the benefit of the workers.
"A New View of Society was set against a backdrop of aggressive industrialisation, terrible conditions for workers in Britain and the Napoleonic Wars," added Mrs Brandwood.
"Children as young as five also worked in dreadful conditions. Robert Owen wanted to take them out of the workplace. He wanted a better world through education, community, sharing and co-operation.
"Within four years of starting his writings he had created his model community in New Lanark, and it very quickly became famous. He inspired change."
Owen, a partner in the mill business, improved housing conditions, while changes in how the mills were run led to a more motivated work force.
Owen also became a pioneer of nursery or early years education, decades before education became compulsory in Britain.
Mrs Brandwood said Owen was still regarded as an important figure by trade unions, politicians and the co-operative movement, and his ideals had been adopted by people in countries around the world.
At 12:02:41 in Northern IrelandThe Westlink in Belfast has been closed in both directions due to a security alert.
At 11:54:18 in EnglandA 12-year-old boy who died after he was hit by a skip lorry on a zebra crossing has been named by police.
At 11:46:43 in EnglandMP Sir Tony Baldry has announced he will stand down at the next general election after 30 years representing North Oxfordshire.
At 11:46:23 in WalesPolar explorer Edgar Evans and poet Vernon Watkins - a close friend of Dylan Thomas - are each to have a blue plaque in their honour in Swansea.
At 11:44:08 in EnglandSwords, machetes and knives were among 145 weapons handed to police during the first week of a Lancashire amnesty.
At 11:42:34 in SportCrystal Palace have agreed a club-record £7m fee with Wigan Athletic to sign midfielder James McArthur.
At 11:39:05 in SportBarnsley have extended the loan deal of Hull City left-back Joe Dudgeon until 5 January.
At 11:35:39 in WalesWork has started to prepare the site of Britain's biggest prison, which is to be built in Wrexham.
At 11:34:49 in EnglandMore than 500 street lights will be switched off overnight in order to save a Berkshire council money.
At 11:33:16 in EnglandA British man shot dead in the United States was due to appear before a grand jury on the day he was killed.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Robert Owen: Ceremony marks social reformer's work [Online] (Updated 12th May 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1428140/Robert-Owen-Ceremony-marks-social-reformers-work [Accessed 1st Sep 2014]
News In Other Categories
The Westlink in Belfast has been closed in both directions due to a security alert.
The director of the BBC World Service, Peter Horrocks, is to leave the corporation in the New Year, it has been announced.
Sniffing faeces with an "electronic nose" can detect strains of bacteria that can cause deadly infections, say UK researchers.
One of the UK's most high-profile fund managers, has said he has decided to sell his holding in HSBC, because he is worried about "fine inflation".
With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com