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Social Policy by Other Means? Mutual Aid and the Origins of the Modern Welfare State in Britain During the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries

  • Bernard Harris (a1)
Abstract:

During the last twenty years, several writers have drawn attention to the role played by friendly societies and other mutual-aid organizations in the development of Britain’s welfare state. Proponents of mutual aid have argued that these organizations were part of the rich associational culture of working-class life; that they represented a viable alternative to state welfare; and that they were eventually undermined by it. However, this article highlights the challenges that these organizations were already facing toward the end of the nineteenth century as a result of changes in working-class culture and the rise of more commercial insurance agencies. It suggests that the rise of state welfare was not so much a cause of these difficulties as a response to them. It also examines the role that friendly societies played in the expansion of welfare services after 1914 and their attitude to calls for further expansion before 1945.

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This article was originally prepared for a workshop entitled “Social Policy by Other Means,” which was organized by the European Consortium for Political Research at the University of Warsaw, 30 March–2 April 2015. It was also discussed at a second meeting in Odense on 27–28 January 2016. I am grateful to Laura Seelkopf and Peter Starke for organizing these meetings and to Hendrik Moeys for helpful comments. I would also like to thank the UK Economic and Social Research Council for supporting some of the research on which the paper is based (RES-062-23-0324), and Aravinda Guntupalli and Roger Logan for their assistance in the collection of data from the Ancient Order of Foresters. The article has benefited considerably from comments made by the editor of JPH and three anonymous referees.

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NOTES

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2. Vincent, D., Poor citizens: the state and the poor in twentieth-century Britain (London, 1991), 45.

3. Garrard, J., Democratisation in Britain: elites, civl society and reform since 1800 (Basingstoke, 2002), 189, 211, 282.

4. T. Woodin, D. Crook, and V. Carpentier, Community and mutual ownership: a historical review (London, 2010), 18, at https://www.jrf.org.uk/sites/default/files/jrf/migrated/files/community-mutual-ownership-full.pdf.

5. Glasman, M., “Labour as a radical tradition,” in M., Glasman, J., Rutherford, M., Stears, and S., White, eds., The Labour tradition and the politics of paradox: the Oxford London seminars, 2010–11, 2011, 29, at http://www.scribd.com/doc/55941677/Labour-Tradition-and-the-Politics-of-Paradox, 1434.

6. P., Blond, Red Tory: how left and right have broken Britain and how we can fix it (London, 2010), 82.

7. D. Cameron, “The big society” (2009), at http://www.conservatives.com/News/Speeches/2009/11/David_Cameron_The_Big_Society.aspx (accessed 20 July 2010).

8. Johnson, P., Saving and spending: the working-class economy in Britain, 1870–1939 (Oxford, 1985), 231–32.

9. P., Thane, “The “Big Society” and the “Big State”: creative tension or crowding out?” Twentieth Century British History 23, no. 3, 408–29 (412).

10. See, e.g., G., Finlayson, Citizen, state and social welfare in Britain, 1830–1990 (Oxford, 1994), 24.

11. Garrard, Democratisation in Britain, 169.

12. “Progress of the Order during 1914,” Fourth Quarterly Report of the 81st Executive Council, July 1915, 538–40.

13. In 1905, the NCFS included 32 societies with a combined membership of 2,894,004 members (PP 1910 Cd. 5035 xlvii, 211, Royal Commission on the Poor Laws and Relief of Distress Appendix Volume VII, Q. 77,256). By 1910, the number of affiliated organizations had risen to 47, with a combined membership of 5,801,135. The officers included members of the Nottingham Ancient Imperial Oddfellows, the Manchester Unity of Oddfellows, the Ashton Unity of Shepherds, the AOF, the Hearts of Oak, the Rechabites, the Rational Association, the Grand United Oddfellows and the Sons of Temperance (“Report of Delegates to the NCFS,” First Quarterly Report of the 77th Executive Council, 1910, 65–72). In September 1938, the conference was attended by representatives of 92 societies, comprising 7,336,189 “voluntary” members and 5,941,466 “state” members. The officers included members of the Loyal Order of Ancient Shepherds, the United Law Clerks Society, the Manchester Unity of Oddfellows, the Hearts of Oak Benefit Society and the National Deposit Friendly Society (AOF, “Report of the Delegates to the NCFS, Second Quarterly Report of the 104th Executive Council, 1939, 8–12).

14. B. Harris, A. Morris, R. Ascough, G. Chikoto, P. Elson, J. McLoughlin, M. Muukkonen, T. Pospíšilová, K. Roka, D. H. Smith, A. Soteri-Proctor, A. Tumanova, and P. Yu, “History of associations and volunteering,” in D. H. Smith, R. Stebbins, and J. Grotz, eds., Palgrave handbook on volunteering and nonprofit associations (Basingstoke, 2017), 23–58.

15. Beveridge, W., Voluntary action: a report on methods of social advance (London, 1948), 21.

16. P., Gosden, The Friendly Societies in England, 1815–1875 (Manchester, 1961), 193; E. Hopkins, Working-class self-help in nineteenth-century England (London, 1995), 9–70; D. Neave, “Friendly societies in Great Britain,” in M. van der Linden, ed., Social security mutualism: the comparative history of mutual benefit societies (Bern, 1996), 41–64.

17. S. Cordery, British friendly societies, 1750–1914 (Basingstoke, 2003), 7–8; Thane, “The “Big Society” and the “Big State.” 412.

18. Johnson, , Saving and spending, 54.

19. Garrard, , Democratisation in Britain, 237.

20. B., Harris, The origins of the British welfare state: society, state and social welfare in England and Wales 1800–1945 (Basingstoke, 2004), 8283.

21. Population figures have been obtained from the Census Reports for 1871 for England and Wales (Population Abstracts, vol. III, xii–xiii), Scotland (Population Tables. Vol. II, 7) and Ireland (General Report, 48). All data can be downloaded from http://www.histpop.org

22. Cordery, British friendly societies, 70.

23. B. Smith and M. Stutzer, “A theory of mutual formation and moral hazard with evidence from the history of the insurance industry,” Review of Financial Studies 8, no. 2 (1995): 545–77 (568–69).

24. M. van Leeuwen, “Historical welfare economics in the nineteenth century: mutual aid and private insurance for burial, sickness, old age, widowhood, and unemployment in the Netherlands,” in B. Harris and P. Bridgen, eds., Charity and mutual aid in Europe and North America since 1800 (New York, 2007), 89–130 (91).

25. Norman, J., The Big Society: the anatomy of the new politics (Buckingham, 2010), 109–10.

26. Blond, Red Tory, 76.

27. Green, D., Reinventing civil society: the rediscovery of welfare without politics (London, 1993), 50.

28. Ibid., 47–49.

29. S., Morley, Oxfordshire friendly societies 1750–1918 (Chipping Norton, 2011).

30. H., Southall and E., Garrett, “Mortality and morbidity among early-nineteenth century engineering workers,” Social History of Medicine 4 (1991): 231–52 (240).

31. Gosden, The friendly societies in England, 94.

32. Southall, and Garrett, , “Mortality and morbidity,” 240; J., Macnicol, The politics of retirement in Britain, 1878–1948 (Cambridge, 1998), 116.

33. D. Weinbren, The Oddfellows, 1810–2010: two hundred years of making friends and helping people (Lancaster, 2010), 144; see also Weinbren, , “‘Organisations for brotherly aid in misfortune’: Beveridge and the friendly societies,” in M., Oppenheimer and N., Deakin, eds., Beveridge and voluntary action in Britain and the wider British world (Manchester), 5165 (59).

34. Gilbert, B., The evolution of national insurance in Great Britain: the origins of the welfare state (London, 1966), 168.

35. Alborn, T., “Senses of belonging: the politics of working-class insurance in Britain, 1880–1914,” Journal of Modern History 73 (2001): 561602 (574–75); Cordery, British friendly societies, 136.

36. Gorsky, M., “Mutual aid and civil society: friendly societies in nineteenth-century Bristol,” Urban History 25 (1998): 302–22 (318); Garrard, Democratisation in Britain, 184.

37. Green, Reinventing civil society, 36.

38. E. Snow, “Some statistical problems suggested by the sickness and mortality data of certain of the large friendly societies,” Journal of the Royal Statistical Society 76 (1913): 445–517 (511).

39. Cordery, , British friendly societies, 137; see also Gilbert, Evolution of national insurance, 169.

40. A. Fisk, Mutual self-help in southern England, 1850–1912 (Southampton, 2006), 178; see also Gorsky, “Mutual aid and civil society,” 318.

41. PP 1874 C. 961 xxiii, 1, Royal Commission on Friendly and Benefit Building Societies, Fourth Report, para. 400.

42. Baernreither, J. M., English associations of working men (London, 1893), 198–99.

43. Johnson, Saving and spending, 62.

44. S. Smiles, Self-help, with illustrations of conduct and perseverance (London, 1996), 187. This was an unabridged reproduction of the second edition of Smiles’s book, originally published in 1866.

45. Alborn, “Senses of belonging, 574; see also F. Ewald, “Insurance and risk,” in G. Burchell, C. Gordon, and P. Miller, eds., The Foucault effect (Chicago, 1991), 197–210 (203–4).

46. F. W., Lane, “To the Editor of the ‘Miscellany,’” Foresters’ Miscellany 20 (1909): 8384 (84).

47. Gilbert, Evolution of national insurance, 166–67.

48. Johnson, Saving and spending, 55.

49. C. Hanson, “Welfare before the welfare state,” in R. M. Hartwell et al., The long debate on poverty: eight essays on industrialisation and the “condition of England” (London, 1972), 111–39 (118–25); D. Green, Working-class patients and the medical establishment: self-help in Britain from the mid-nineteenth century to 1948 (Aldershot, 1985), 93–96; Green, Reinventing civil society, 65–66.

50. Garrard, Democratisation in Britain, 169.

51. Ibid., 178.

52. Hanson, “Welfare before the welfare state,” 119.

53. PP 1872 C. 514–I xxvi, 101, Second report of the Commissioners appointed to enquire into friendly and benefit societies. Part II. Evidence taken in London (1870–71) on friendly societies and workingmen’s clubs, Q. 201.

54. PP 1895 C. 7684-II xv, 1, Royal Commission on the Aged Poor, Report of the Royal Commission on the Aged Poor. Appendix and Index. Vol. III, Q. 11,060.

55. Harris, B., Gorsky, M., Guntupalli, A., and Hinde, A., “Long-term changes in sickness and health: further evidence from the Hampshire Friendly Society,” Economic History Review 65 (2012): 719–45 (722).

56. Royal Commission on Friendly and Benefit Building Societies, Fourth Report, 21.

57. PP 1878 (388) lxix, 3, Reports of the Chief Registrar of Friendly Societies for the year ending 31 December 1877, 46; quoted in Harris, Origins of the British welfare state, 81.

58. Ibid., 83–84.

59. Johnson, , Saving and spending, 5557.

60. C. Edwards, M. Gorsky, B. Harris, and A. Hinde, “Sickness, insurance and health: assessing trends in morbidity through friendly society records,” Annales de Démographie Historique 1 (2003): 131–67 (137).

61. Johnson, Saving and spending, 62; Alborn, “Senses of belonging,” 580.

62. Royal Commission on Friendly and Benefit Building Societies, Fourth Report, para. 400; see also S. Moore, “Deposit societies,” Foresters’ Miscellany 21 (1910): 543.

63. Royal Commission on Friendly and Benefit Building Societies, Fourth, para. 763.

64. PP 1893-94 C. 7063 xxxix, 1, Fourth Report of the Royal Commission on Labour, Q. 1331; Royal Commission on the Aged Poor, Report of the Royal Commission on the Aged Poor. Appendix and Index. Vol. III, Q. 11,039; PP 1909 Cd. 4755 xl, 541, Royal Commission on the Poor Laws and Relief of Distress, Appendix Volume III, QQ. 35,147, 35,174–80.

65. Hanson, “Welfare before the welfare state,” 122; Green, Working-class patients, 93–96; Green, Reinventing civil society, 65–66.

66. M. Gorsky, “Friendly society health insurance in nineteenth-century England,” in M. Gorsky and S. Sheard, eds., Financing medicine: the British experience since 1750 (Abingdon), 147–64 (158).

67. Morley, Oxfordshire friendly societies. Morley himself argued (see pp. 4–6) that there were 196 unregistered societies and 755 societies in all, but the basis of these figures is not entirely clear. A close inspection of the descriptions of each society suggests that the number of “permanently” unregistered societies was 170. There were also two societies that were initially described as unregistered, but which obtained registration at a later date, and one society whose registration status was unclear. An error in the numbering of societies in the list means that the total number of societies was 745 rather than 755.

68. Royal Commission on Friendly and Benefit Building Societies, Fourth Report, paras. 647–53, 680.

69. Benson, J., “The thrift of English coalminers, 1860–95,” Economic History Review 31 (1978): 410–18.

70. Royal Commission on Friendly and Benefit Building Societies, Fourth Report, paras. 700–702.

71. Ibid., para. 682.

72. Ibid., para. 763.

73. PP 1890–91 (310) lxxix, 193, Reports of the Chief Registrar of Friendly Societies for the year ending 31 December 1890, 15–16.

74. Ibid., 15.

75. Royal Commission on the Poor Laws and Relief of Distress, Appendix Volume III, QQ. 35, 445–46.

76. Harris, B., M., Gorsky, A., Guntupalli, and A., Hinde, “Ageing, sickness and health in England and Wales during the mortality transition,” Social History of Medicine 24 (2011): 643–65.

77. Brabrook, E., Provident societies and industrial welfare (London, 1898), 88.

78. Report of the Royal Commission on the Aged Poor. Appendix and Index. Vol. III, Q. 12,422; see also P. Thane, Old age in English history (Oxford, 2000), 199.

79. Thane, “The “Big Society” and the “Big State,” 414–15.

80. J. H. Treble, “The attitudes of friendly societies towards the movement in Great Britain for state pensions, 1878–1908,” International Review of Social History 15 (1970): 266–99 (288–89); see also P. Thane, “The working class and state ‘welfare’ in Britain, 1880–1914,” Historical Journal (27): 877–900 (895).

81. Treble, “The attitudes of friendly societies,” 298.

82. See also Garrard, Democratisation in Britain, 207–8, 211; Thane, “The “Big Society” and the “Big State,” 417.

83. Fowler, J., “State insurance,” Foresters’ Miscellany 21, 198–99 (198).

84. PP 1884–85 (270) x, 41, Select Committee on National Provident Insurance, Report, Proceedings, Minutes of Evidence, Appendix, Index, Q. 1069.

85. Anon, ., “Compulsory state insurance: shall we be disillusioned?” Foresters’ Miscellany 20 (1909): 251–52 (251).

86. Another PDCR, “To the Editor of the ‘Miscellany’” Foresters’ Miscellany 20 (1909): 274–65 (275).

87. C. W. Morecroft, “Compulsory national sickness insurance: is it desirable?” Foresters’ Miscellany 21 (1910): 173–78 (177–78).

88. Weinbren, The Oddfellows, 160.

89. Ibid., 179.

90. R. F., Calder, “Is state insurance desirable?” Foresters’ Miscellany, 21, 1910, 205–7 (p. 207).

91. C. W. Narlborough, “Infirmity,” Foresters’ Miscellany 2 (1909): 481–83 (483); see also Narlborough, “A proposed tax on thrift,” Foresters’ Miscellany 21 (2010): 200–202; W. Thomas, “State insurance,” Foresters’ Miscellany 21 (1910): 236.

92. Tranter, E., “Is state insurance desirable? Yes,” Foresters’ Miscellany 21 (2010): 137–38.

93. E. B. Deadman, “Is state insurance desirable? Yes,” Foresters’ Miscellany 21 (1910): 108–10 (110).

94. Treble, “The attitudes of friendly societies,” 295.

95. J. L., Stead, “Friendly societies and state insurance,” Foresters’ Miscellany 21 (1910): 812.

96. Gilbert, The evolution of national insurance, 370.

97. For an alternative perspective on the reasons for the inclusion of industrial assurance companies, see M. Heller, “The National Insurance Acts 1911–47, the approved societies and the Prudential Assurance Company,” Twentieth Century British History 19, 1–28.

98. Gilbert, , The evolution of national insurance, 389400.

99. M. Heller, “The National Insurance Acts,” esp. 2–3.

100. TNA T172/60, National Insurance Bill, Deputation of the NCFS, 23.

101. Ibid., 6, 19.

102. Ibid.

103. Heller, “The National Insurance Acts,” 3. See also G. Carpenter, “National health insurance: a case study in the use of private non-profit-making organizations in the provision of welfare benefits,” Public Administration 62 (1984): 71–89 (82).

104. J. N. Lee, A. H. Warren, and W. Marlow, “The Parliamentary Agent’s report,” Second Quarterly Report of the 81st Executive Council of the AOF, 1915, 223–33 (232). See also Weinbren, The Oddfellows, 159; N. Whiteside, “Social protection in Britain 1900–50 and welfare state development: the case of health insurance,” 15–18 (downloaded from http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/sociology/staff/whitesiden/whitesiden_index/recent_publications/whiteside2009-castillo.pdf).

105. N. Whiteside, “Private agencies for public purposes: some new perspectives on policy making in health insurance between the Wars,” Journal of Social Policy 12 (1983): 165–94 (see esp. 171, 192); Whiteside, “Regulating markets: the real costs of polycentric administration under the National Health Insurance scheme (1912–46),” Public Administration 75 (467–85) (471); Harris, Origins of the British welfare state, 226.

106. Harris, Origins of the British welfare state, 225.

107. Ancient Order of Foresters, Sixth Annual Supplement to the Quarterly Reports of the Executive Council of the AOF, 1911, 6–25.

108. Weinbren, The Oddfellows, 166.

109. Executive Council, “Address to the Officers and Members of Branches of the Order,” First Quarterly Report to the 85th Executive Council of the AOF, 1919, 3–9 (3–4).

110. Executive Council, “Annual Report of Executive Council,” First Quarterly Report of the 89th Executive Council of the AOF, 1923, 44–57 (50); Executive Council, “Annual Report of Executive Council,” First Quarterly Report of the 91st Executive Council of the AOF, 1925, 41–58 (58).

111. Executive Council, “Annual Report of Executive Council,” First Quarterly Report of the 92nd Executive Council of the AOF, 1926, 3959 (47).

112. Executive Council, “Annual Report of Executive Council,” First Quarterly Report of the 93rd Executive Council of the AOF, 1927, 3859 (46).

113. Executive Council, “Annual Report of Executive Council,” First Quarterly Report of the 96th Executive Council of the AOF, 1930, 42–68 (55–57).

114. Executive Council, “Report by the Executive Council on the subject of publicity,’” First Quarterly Report of the 97th Executive Council of the AOF, 1931, 8895 (95).

115. Executive Council, “Address to the Officers and Members of the Branches of the Order,” First Quarterly Report of the 87th Council, 1922, 3–6 (5).

116. H. Loe, “Address of Bro. Henry J. Loe, High Chief Ranger,” First Quarterly Report of the 89th Executive Council of the AOF, 1923, 36–43 (38).

117. C. Prust, “Address of Bro. Chas. E. Prust, High Chief Ranger,” First Quarterly Report of the 94th Executive Council of the AOF, 1928, 32–40 (39); Executive Council, “Annual Report of Executive Council,” First Quarterly Report of the 95th Executive Council of the AOF, 1929, 41–66 (65). John Little, or “Little John,” was a friend and associate of the famous outlaw, Robin Hood. Robin Hood himself was regarded as the first “Forester” (http://www.stichtingargus.nl/vrijmetselarij/aof_r.html). For a Pathé News film showing the first “pilgrimage,” see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lRT-o3DmYrI.

118. Executive Council, “Report on the Proceedings of the 108th High Court,” First Quarterly Report of the 109th Executive Council of the AOF, 1947, 10–64 (50).

119. A. J. Howell, “Address by Bro. A.J. Howell, H.C.R.,” First Quarterly Report of the 109th Executive Council of the AOF, 1947, 65–68 (67).

120. Mass Observation, A report on the friendly societies (London, 1947), 7, 12, 13, 31.

121. Harris et al., “Ageing, sickness and health,” 652.

122. Ancient Order of Foresters, Fifth Annual Supplement to the Quarterly reports of the Executive Council of the AOF, 1910, 64.

123. Investigation Committee, “Report of the Investigation Committee,” First Quarterly Report of the 80th Executive Council of the AOF, 1913, 56–63 (59).

124. Weinbren, The Oddfellows, 146.

125. Ibid., 147.

126. Dunford, J., “Address of the High Chief Ranger,” First Quarterly Report of the 85th Executive Council of the AOF, 1919, 4753 (52).

127. Quoted in G., Finlayson, “A moving frontier: voluntarism and the state in British social welfare, 1911–49,” Twentieth Century British History 1 (1990): 183206 (185–86).

128. Mass Observation, Report on friendly societies, 30. More precisely, the witness said that “when the National Insurance Act came in, they said it was the death knell of the friendly societies, and a lot of them did go out of existence.”

129. Whiteside, “Private agencies for public purposes,” 185.

130. A. Penn, “Social history and organizational development: revisiting Beveridge’s Voluntary Action,” in C. Rochester, G. C. Gosling, A. Penn, and M. Zimmeck, eds., The roots of voluntary action: historical perspectives on current social policy (Brighton, 2011), 17–31 (24–25).

131. W., Beveridge and A. F., Wells, The evidence for voluntary action, being memoranda by organisations and individuals and other material relevant to voluntary action (London, 1949), 20.

132. Harris, Origins of the British welfare state, 82.

133. NCFS, “Report,” Second Quarterly Report of the 81st Executive Council of the AOF, 1915, 214–43 (220); Lee, Warren, and Marlow, “The Parliamentary Agent’s Report,” 225–26.

134. NCFS, “Report,” Second Quarterly Report of the 83rd Executive Council of the AOF, 1917, 174–221 (179).

135. Executive Council, “Address to the Officers and Members of Branches of the Order,” Third Quarterly Report of the 85th Executive Council of the AOF, 1920, 235–40 (239).

136. Executive Council, “Report,” First Quarterly Report of the 87th Executive Council of the AOF, 1921, 61–82 (64).

137. Alborn, “Senses of belonging,” 600; Weinbren, The Oddfellows, 160.

138. Prust, , “Address of Bro. Chas. E. Prust,” 3637.

139. J., Roberts, “Address of Bro. Alderman Joseph Roberts, High Chief Ranger,” First Quarterly Report of the 96th Executive Council of the AOF, 1931, 3945 (40).

140. Parker, S., “Address of Bro. S. Parker, High Chief Ranger,” First Quarterly Report of the 102nd Executive Council of the AOF, 1936, 4448 (46).

141. Whiteside, “Private agencies for public purposes,” 174.

142. See Johnson, Saving and spending, 194. The societies’ efforts were eventually rewarded by the passage of the Outdoor Relief (Friendly Societies) Act in 1904.

143. Macnicol, The politics of retirement, 156.

144. In 1911, the Ancient Order of Foresters reported that 467 members had been deprived of the full pension of five shillings a week and that 316 members had been deprived of part of their pension as a result of receiving friendly-society benefits. See Executive Council, “Address to the Officers and Members of the Order,” Second Quarterly Report of the 77th Executive Council of the AOF, 1911, 173–80; Inquiry re. Old Age Pensions, “Inquiry re. Old Age Pensions,” Second Quarterly Report of the 77th Executive Council of the AOF, 1911, 186–89.

145. PP 1919 Cmd. 420 xxvi, 279, Report of the Departmental Committee on Old Age Pensions, 9.

146. Marlow, W., “Report of Parliamentary Agent,” First Quarterly Report of the 87th Executive Council of the AOF, 1921, 8596 (91–92).

147. NCFS, “Report,” Second Quarterly Report of the 84th Executive Council of the AOF, 1919, 382–402 (284, 386, 388).

148. B., Gilbert, British social policy, 1914–39 (London, 1970), 281.

149. Whiteside, “Private agencies for public purposes,” 186.

150. Royal Commission on National Health Insurance, Appendix to Minutes of Evidence taken before the Royal Commission on National Health Insurance (London, 1925), 194, 202, 209–10.

151. Ibid., 291–92; see also Whiteside, “Private agencies for public purposes,” 186.

152. G., Walker, “Address of Bro. G. Wistow Walker, High Chief Ranger,” First Quarterly Report of the 90th Executive Council of the AOF, 1924, 3239 (35).

153. Torrance, W. J., “Address of W.J. Torrance, High Chief Ranger,” First Quarterly Report of the 91st Executive Council of the AOF, 1925, 3440 (39).

154. Executive Council, “Annual Report,” First Quarterly Report of the 102nd Executive Council of the AOF, 1936, 49–77 (70); Delegates to the NCFS, “Report,” Third Quarterly Report of the 101st Executive Council of the AOF, 1936, 116–25 (120–21).

155. PP 1942–3 Cmd. 6404 vi, 119, Report by Sir William Beveridge on Social Insurance and Allied Services.

156. NCFS, “Interdepartmental Committee on Social Insurance and Allied Services: Memorandum submitted on behalf of the NCFS,” Eleventh Quarterly Report of the 105th Executive Council of the AOF, 1942, 40ff., para. 4.

157. Executive Council, “Annual General Report,” First Quarterly Report of the 106th Executive Council of the AOF, 1945, 31–52 (40).

158. Ibid.

159. Delegates to the NCFS, “Report,” First Quarterly Report of the 106th Executive Council of the AOF, 1945, 82–84 (84).

160. Weinbren, The Oddfellows, 174.

161. Howell, “Address by Bro. A.J. Howell,” 65.

162. E. P., Thompson, The making of the English working class (Harmondsworth, 1968), 13.

163. Executive Council, “Address to the Officers and Members of the Order,” Second Quarterly Report of the 78th Executive Council of the AOF, 1912, 195–200 (195).

164. See also Thane, , “The “Big Society” and the “Big State,” 424.

165. Ancient Order of Foresters, “Circular 3/46,” reprinted in Third Quarterly Report of the 107th Executive Council of the AOF, 1946, 20ff.

166. W. H. Letts, “Report of the Parliamentary Agent 107th High Court, Tunbridge Wells, 1946,” First Quarterly Report of the 108th Executive Council of the AOF, 1946, 56–58 (56). See also Weinbren, ‘“Organisations for brotherly aid in misfortune,’” 55; and Weinbren, The Oddfellows, 174–76.

167. Gorsky, M., Mohan, J., and Willis, T., Mutualism and health care: British hospital contributory schemes in the twentieth century (Manchester, 2006), 166–68.

This article was originally prepared for a workshop entitled “Social Policy by Other Means,” which was organized by the European Consortium for Political Research at the University of Warsaw, 30 March–2 April 2015. It was also discussed at a second meeting in Odense on 27–28 January 2016. I am grateful to Laura Seelkopf and Peter Starke for organizing these meetings and to Hendrik Moeys for helpful comments. I would also like to thank the UK Economic and Social Research Council for supporting some of the research on which the paper is based (RES-062-23-0324), and Aravinda Guntupalli and Roger Logan for their assistance in the collection of data from the Ancient Order of Foresters. The article has benefited considerably from comments made by the editor of JPH and three anonymous referees.

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