Leeds loves Limmud experience

By Jonathan Kalmus, March 11, 2011
Harris and Miriam Lorie relishing the Limmud environment

Harris and Miriam Lorie relishing the Limmud environment

Leeds Limmud attracted a record 400 crowd on Sunday for a roster of speakers including MPs Denis MacShane and Louise Ellman and Jeremy Stowe-Lindner, head of London cross-communal secondary school JCoSS.

The turnout - double the total for the last local Limmud - included people from Newcastle and Manchester.

Organising committee co-chair Simon Phillips was pleased at the participation from all age groups. "We had a young Limmud programme alongside the main events comprising a mixture of people who gave sessions in the adult programme and those who came along specifically to work with children and teenagers".

The event demonstrated the "pulling power" of the Leeds Jewish community, he added.

Participant James Mendelsohn, 33, found Mr MacShane's session on the new antisemitism "informative and very disturbing".

But he took a positive message from Board of Deputies' vice-president Jonathan Arkush, who discussed the demographic future of Anglo-Jewry.

"Leeds, like other Jewish communities, has seen decline, but there is a lot of hope and organisations aimed at young people springing up," said Mr Mendeslohn, who is originally from Shropshire.

He added that the event showed "the Leeds community as vibrant, even if not as big as others".

Last updated: 10:46am, March 11 2011