Mersey bleats over collapse of building plan

By Cathy Forman, March 26, 2009

Members of Liverpool’s Childwall Synagogue have voiced dismay at the shelving of plans for a new complex.

Reporting to its annual meeting on Monday, chairman Norman Goldstone said the collapse of plans to relocate the Stapely care home to the rear of the shul would put plans for the complex “on hold for a few years”.

Childwall would have received £2 million from the £3.5 million sale of the Stapely site, which was scuppered by the economic downturn. The money would have funded a building incorporating offices, kitchens and a mikveh.

Plans to sell the synagogue car park, valued at £1.2 million, had also been postponed as the proceeds would be insufficient to fund the building project. The 550-member shul now needs to find £400,000 for essential renovation.

“Everybody’s disappointed,” said shul council member Tony Ostrin afterwards. “It is irritating that having worked so hard for redevelopment of both sites, the scheme can’t go ahead.”

Mr Goldstone is standing down as chairman after 11 years but will remain until a successor is found.

At the meeting, he paid tribute to shul caretaker Ian Richter, who died last week. Mr Richter, who had served Childwall for nine years, was “incredibly well-liked and had been an amazing part of the shul”. Many community members attended the funeral at Liverpool Crematorium on Tuesday.

Last updated: 4:30pm, July 22 2009