Rabbi wins Tory seat

By Jay Grenby, October 29, 2009

Elstree and Borehamwood emeritus minister Rabbi Alan Plancey has an extended congregation after winning the Borehamwood North seat for the Tories in a Hertfordshire County Council by-election.

In his new role he will draw on the people skills honed during more than 30 years as a community rabbi.

“I don’t want them to go to waste and now I am going to employ them for the benefit of the whole community,” he said.

The poll was triggered by the death of Conservative councillor Martin Heywood — “a good friend of mine and always a very good friend to the Jewish community”. Councillor Heywood’s wife was among those who urged Rabbi Plancey to stand.

A long-time champion of the Tories and a keen supporter of current Hertsmere MP James Clappison and his predecessor Lord Parkinson, Rabbi Plancey maintains that as he is no longer a serving rabbi, “I am free to engage in politics on my own account”.

His victory had been “a community vote, not a Jewish vote”.

Last updated: 5:37pm, October 29 2009