Preston Model: Community Wealth Generation and a Local Cooperative Economy
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After the financial crisis of 2007/8, the city of Preston in Lancashire, UK, lost half of its government grants and nearly a billion pounds (US$1.3 billon) in private investments. In what has become known as the Preston Model , the city responded by creating a community wealth project. In partnership with the Centre for Local Economic Strategies, the project centred on several large anchor institutions (e.g. the local hospital) shifting their procurement practices from external to more local sources. Simultaneously, the project developed worker cooperatives to address gaps in local supply capacity and support a local cooperative economy. Preston continues to explore alternative ways of bringing wealth to the community, such as a windfarm for local energy generation and redirection of pension investments to the regional economy.