Centenary Research

For our centenary a team of volunteers worked together to find out information on the work done by CVA over the last 100 years.  From setting up as the Council for Social Welfare and assisting during the First World War to our current role in supporting local voluntary and community groups the research was used to produce a commemorative brochure.   Click here to read our brochure (pdf)


Here is a list of the 53 affiliated agencies featured in the annual report of Chester Council for Social Welfare in 1915-16.  The groups highlighted in red are still in existence.  If you know what happened to any of the other groups we would love to hear from you!  Link to pdf

Here are some summaries of our meeting minutes from our first meetings:

August 1914 – March 1915
March 1915 – September 1916

Here is a section written by Jonathan Pepler (who guided our research team and compiled all their findings into themes for the above brochure).  The following chapter depicts our relationship with the local Council over time.  Link to chapter

A civic survey of Cheshire was carried out at Le Play House in London.  Here is an extract from a report on social services in Cheshire in 1927 – Link to extract

In addition to this work, our volunteer Margaret Yorke found out a great deal about the work done with older people in this period.   Link to research (doc)

Here are some links to information on key people who played a part in social welfare and the focu

We also had students from University of Chester who took over our news page during their placement and turned it into a historical blog.  Click here to view their posts.

Jonathon 2      Bisset

On 12 August 2014 we hosted an event at the Town Hall celebrating our centenary.  Attended by 180 people, including Councillors, staff from local voluntary groups and many volunteers, the event concentrated on our evolution from Chester Council of Social Welfare at the beginning of the First World War to our current work as Chester Voluntary Action.

cake    carol speech 2

Tom Stephenson, our Chair spoke about our origins and Carol Berry, Chief Officer spoke of the future of Chester Voluntary Action with Jonathan Pepler, a volunteer on the heritage project, filling in the gaps with a detailed account of some of the work done through the years.

Alongside these presentations were excellent performances by Movers and Shakers choir from the Neuro Therapy Centre, and The Grace Note choir from Addaction (below) showcasing the diversity of our local groups.

Movers n Shakers 8     Grace Note 2

There was also a presentation of Investing in Volunteers awards to Deafness Support Network and Phoenix Domestic Abuse Support Services made by David Briggs, Lord Lieutenant of Cheshire.

Despite many great changes over this 100 year period, the work and purpose of CVA has remained the same throughout, improving the quality of the local community and promoting and supporting voluntary action.