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In partnership with The Co‑op, Co‑op News, The Co‑operative College and The Co‑operative Heritage Trust

More Than a Shop podcast episodes

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The More Than a Shop podcast explores how people power and co-operation can tackle some of the biggest challenges facing society.

A thought-provoking podcast series

Presented by BBC broadcaster and journalist, Elizabeth Alker, the More Than a Shop podcast welcomes guests with something new and radical to say about the big issues of the day and doing business the right way.

Recorded before the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic, the series covers big topics from climate change and food, to mental health and education. Find and subscribe to More Than a Shop on your preferred podcasting platform.

You can also listen to the episodes here: 

This episode explores where the barriers exist in the current day education system, for both young people and adults. Presenter Elizabeth Alker speaks to guests Cilla Ross, Principal and CEO of The Co-operative College, and poet/performer David Scott aka ARGH KiD. The episode also features an interview with Leeds Co-op Academy students and Principal Jonny Mitchell – of Educating Yorkshire fame.

In the second episode of More Than a Shop, presenter Elizabeth Alker chats about the music industry with BBC 6 Music's Chris Hawkins and Terry Tyldesley from Resonate, the ethical music streaming co-op. They explore some of the challenges facing musicians and ways to challenge the ‘norms’ that have emerged in recent years that make it such a difficult industry to break through. 

Elizabeth Alker chats to people convinced that the UK economy would be transformed if more businesses were worker and employee owned: Beau Bulman from Suma – Europe’s largest equal pay employer – and James Wright Co‑operatives UK’s Policy Officer. The episode also features Leeds Bread Co‑op – a worker owned co‑operative.

In this episode, Elizabeth Alker explores the need for new conversations, support networks and funding focused on mental health. She talks to Rachel Summerscales of Hulme Community Garden Centre (who has since left the organisation) and Stephen Buckley, Head of Information at mental health charity, Mind. 

Elizabeth Alker discusses end of life – how to talk about it, how to plan for it – with Co‑op Funeralcare’s Raegan Drew and Methodist minister, writer and filmmaker Kathleen Loughlin. We also hear from a Death Café in Manchester – a safe, informal space for people to talk about death and grief. Recorded before the Covid-19 pandemic, this episode does not reflect current funeral restrictions in place or other impacts being felt in society.

Food, glorious food is the focus of this podcast episode. Elizabeth Alker talks to vegetable gardener, YouTuber and author Huw Richards and Incredible Edible’s Clare Negus. We also hear from the fantastic community-owned and run Radcliffe Market.

Elizabeth Alker is joined by industry experts – Central England Co-operative‘s Chief Executive Debbie Robinson and the IGD’s Head of Shopper Insight Rhian Thomas – who talk passionately about how the high street is still relevant. We also hear how Headingley Development Trust has inspired community ownership as a way of taking control of the local high street.

Elizabeth Alker talks to Disruption Doctor, speaker and activist Samantha Moyo and Louise Marix Evans, Director of community energy organisations Community Energy North and Pennine Community Power. The episode also features tree planting organisation, Treesponsibility. 

During the Covid‑19 pandemic, we’ve seen some inspirational stories of co‑operation. In this special Co-op Fortnight 2020 podcast episode, we’ve collected just a few of those inspiring stories from co-operatives across the UK. Listen to the podcast here

More Than a Shop has been created in partnership by Co‑operatives UK, The Co‑opCo‑op NewsThe Co‑operative College and The Co‑operative Heritage Trust. The podcast series has been produced by Geoff Bird on behalf of Sparklab Productions.

Please note: The More Than a Shop series was recorded before the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic. 

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