In February this year, the Archive was delighted to receive a new collection from a member of the public who got in touch.  The team was invited to look at a collection of artwork produced by the late Robert (Bob) Salmon.  Bob worked at the Silk Screening Department of the CWS in Reddish from the late 1950s to the 1970s.  His job was to produce hand-painted artwork that was used for in-store promotions and advertising.  Among the collection is adverts for the popular ‘99’ brand tea and famous co-op ‘divi’, as well as a wide range of other products from food to furniture. Bob also created artwork for holiday savings clubs and Christmas grottos so the collection has something for everyone!

Advertising is a popular subject amongst researchers who are interested in graphic design as well as the slogans and imagery used.  It is also of interest to co-operative businesses who are seeking to be inspired by looking back at how the co-op movement was portrayed and what food and other items were popular at the time.

The collection was re-discovered by Bob’s wife June – it had been stored away, largely unseen for many years. This meant that the collection was in great condition, almost looking like new and its new home in the Archive means that it will stay that way for many years to come.  The collection is currently being sorted into categories to make it easier for potential researchers to find their way around the catalogue.  Mrs. Salmon also kindly let us take digital images from her photographs of Bob at work, with one, in particular, showing him working on a large-scale installation of a popular cartoon show from the 1960s!  (see photograph at top of page)

When complete, the catalogue will be placed online and anyone wishing to view the material can visit the Archive.

Above: Oldham Co-operative Holidays advert

Advert for 99 Tea