Getting closer to eruv
A planning application for a Manchester eruv is "very very close" after preparatory discussions with Greater Manchester local authorities.
The suggested 13-mile religious boundary would cover Prestwich, Broughton Park and Crumpsall, allowing Jews to carry items and push buggies on Shabbat. The majority of its boundary would be made up of pre-existing houses and fencing, but more than 100 poles would need to be erected at a cost of £100,000.
Two halachic experts who worked on the north-west London eruv project have visited Manchester three times from Jerusalem to ensure standards are met. The plans already have the backing of the Manchester Beth Din and the majority of local rabbis.
An eruv committee under the aegis of the Manchester and District Council of Synagogues has been in complex discussions with city planners because the eruv crosses the council boundaries of Salford, Bury and Manchester. Months of consultations have focused on constructing the eruv with minimal impact on local surroundings.
The eruv committee was formed seven years ago, but synagogue council chairman Shimmy Lopian pointed out: "The London eruv took 17 years from conception to erecting its poles so we haven't done too badly. Once the planning application has been submitted, we will be setting up a funding committee."