The word Equitable is not used a lot in Co-operative titles but the Manchester & Salford Equitable Co-operative Society had it - probably taking it from the first of the modern consumer co-op societies the Equitable Pioneers. History books refer to the original shop and society in Toad Lane as the Rochdale Pioneers. But they called themselves the Equitable Pioneers in December 1844.
Back to Manchester...
"With the exception of one or two short-lived attempts to form other societies in the 1860s, their only rival was the Manchester & Salford Industrial Co-operative Society, which at one time had eight branches, but ran into difficulties in the later 1860s and went into liquidation in 1870"
- footnote page 13 from "Feeding the Victorian City -the food supply of Manchester 1770 - 1870" by Roger Scola (1992, Manchester).
Just started reading this book, or more like dipping into chapters, and it is very a comprehensive food history more like a massive Phd with all sources acknowledged. Now out of print but the local municipal library lends copies.
Previously I thought the Manchester & Salford Industrial was some short-lived one store society but now I need to know more.