Founded in 1861, the independent Lincolnshire Co-operative – which administers over 200 outlets around the county including food stores, pharmacies, funeral services, post offices, coffee shops, department stores and a florist – has a quarter of a million individual members, all of whom get a share of its profits. In the past financial year, £20.9 million was paid to members in the form of a dividend – ‘the divi’ – and each Co-op cardholder is linked with a local good cause, with a donation made every time they shop. The democratic, ethical and social principles underlying the co-operative movement sees Lincolnshire members elect representatives to their board – in the run-up to an election, ballot papers are automatically generated with a till receipt – while buying energy from small-scale hydro-electric plants and wind farms, and working with the council to deliver local library services.