Community life

Antisemitic crime drops in Barnet

By Leon Symons, April 22, 2010

Barnet, home to Britain's biggest Jewish population, has reported a significant drop in racist and religious hate crime and an increase in catching the perpetrators.

There were 284 racist offences during the 2009/10 year, which ended in March, compared to 428 in the previous 12 months.

Up from 35 per cent to 50 per cent was the rate of clear-up - where police identify the culprits and a punishment is applied ranging from a caution to a prison sentence.


Kosher restaurant wanted for stately home

By Robyn Rosen, April 15, 2010

Kosher facilities are among a list of requests from Finchley residents campaigning for a stately home and park to become more accessible to the community.

Avenue House currently provides facilities for weddings and conferences but residents are writing to its trust to ask for a new kitchen to be set up for kosher catering.

More than 50 families are involved in the campaign and organisers hope another 300 people will sign up.

"The demographic of the area is primarily Jewish," said Jason Lurie, one of the campaign leaders.


More than 1000 attend Chief Rabbi's Yom HaShoah

By Jay Grenby, April 15, 2010

Close on 1,000 people took up the Chief Rabbi's open invitation to attend a Yom Hashoah ceremony at Edgware Synagogue, hailed as "a prototype of a Holocaust service for a new generation".

Lord Sacks was among the speakers and the event also incorporated readings, choral and instrumental music and audio-visual material displayed on giant screens.

Another contributor was 18-year-old Hayley Marks from Stanmore, a participant in a trip to Poland last year organised by the United Synagogue youth arm, Tribe.


Interfaith cricket scheme praised in Leeds

By Simon Rocker, April 15, 2010

An interfaith cricket scheme launched by Leeds Jewish Representative Council has been showcased nationally as a model of bridge-building between communities.

It is the recipient of a £12,000 "Faith in Action" grant from the government-sponsored Community Development Foundation. The Muslim Jewish Forum of Greater Manchester has received a similar sum for a variety of interfaith ventures.

The Leeds scheme is one of 19 featured in Faith Matters, a new booklet from the CDF highlighting local success stories.


Survivor leads March of the Living in Poland

By Marcus Dysch, April 15, 2010

Auschwitz survivor Freddie Knoller led a British delegation at the annual March of the Living in Poland this week.

Vienna-born Mr Knoller joined other survivors and thousands of students from around the world on the three-kilometre route from Auschwitz to Birkenau on Monday.

He was invited by the Austrian government to participate in the march, coinciding with Yom Hashoah, the remembrance day for Holocaust victims.


Health scare shuts Manchester care home

By Jonathan Kalmus, April 15, 2010

Heathlands Village care home in north Manchester was closed to visitors this week after a stomach bug outbreak among residents.

The home shut its doors from Monday as part of a medical protocol to prevent the illness spreading. Karen Phillips, chief executive of the Federation of Jewish Services, which administers Heathlands, said only a small number of residents had been infected.

"We've always had policy in place for dealing with any infection. With 230 residents and a maximum of 500 people on site altogether, it's far better to act with caution."


Kosher restaurant to open in Westfield centre

April 15, 2010

A kosher restaurant is to open at the £1.6 billion Westfield shopping centre in White City.

The 120-seat restaurant, designed by Israeli architects, will be a second branch of Isola Bella and will serve its first customers in June.

Isola Bella's Leor Nissim said: "It's based on our Hendon restaurant but will also have an in-house bakery and new choices of food.

"It will mean that Jewish people will be able to enjoy a day out in Westfield and have a nice meal too."


Chai launches in Glasgow

By Stephanie Brickman, April 15, 2010

The support services of Chai Cancer Care are being extended through a partnership with Jewish Care Scotland.

A breast cancer awareness event in Glasgow addressed by emeritus professor of surgery Michael Baum will formally launch the collaboration next month. However, significant demand for the advice, counselling and therapies offered by Chai for patients and their families has already been identified north of the border.

It will work from the purpose-built Giffnock complex of Jewish Care Scotland, which currently supports a number of cancer sufferers.


Bournemouth synagogue rejected as 'listed building'

By Corinne Rein, April 15, 2010

Bournemouth Hebrew Congregation leaders have welcomed the decision of Culture Secretary Ben Bradshaw to reject an application from English Heritage for the shul complex to be given listed status.

The shul had opposed the listing, which would have complicated the sale of the town centre premises, described as a "last gasp of red-brick seaside orientalism" by the Jewish Heritage in England guide.


Property firm sues dead woman over student flat

By Jonathan Kalmus, April 15, 2010

A student property company has outraged the family of a woman who died of leukaemia by pursuing a rent claim over a flat her daughter never occupied.

"Susan Ellis (deceased)" was the name on a writ for over £2,000 from Leeds firm Parklane. Mrs Ellis, from Whitefield in Manchester, died in January.

She was the guarantor on the flat for her daughter Victoria, who never moved in, having dropped out before her final year at Leeds Metropolitan University to become her mother's carer.