Community life

Maccabi cricketer dies in US, aged 24

December 30, 2008

A well-known Maccabi cricketer has died from a leukaemia-related illness in New York at the age of 24.

Richard Ableson played for Belmont and Edgware Cricket Club until his move to America in 2007. The son of former BECC chairman Mark Ableson, the spin bowler and hard-hitting late middle order batsman made his first XI debut at the age of 14. He was described by current chairman Neil Myeroff as “the perfect club member, always on time and helping out with odd jobs. He was also fun off the field and his sense of humour was great for team spirit.”


Leo Baeck to auction signed Chagall books

By Simon Rocker, December 30, 2008

London’s Leo Baeck College is to sell a collection of 49 books signed and illustrated by Marc Chagall.

The collection, believed to be worth more than £250,000, was donated to the college 15 years ago by Alfred and Irmgard Neuman, who were neighbours of the artist in St Paul de Vence, South of France. They were impressed by its role at the time as the only Progressive rabbinic seminary in Europe.


Shul looks ahead

By Jay Grenby, December 30, 2008

Radlett Synagogue members have approved a wide-ranging “strategy and vision” document defining the community’s goals over the next five years.

After the last in a series of consultations with congregants, board member Andrew Katz claimed “a loud and clear endorsement” of the shul’s plans.

Mr Katz and board colleagues Michael Seres and Howard Cohen were aiming to “grow the buzz in Radlett through a mixture of religious, educational and social activities for all ages across the community”.


Rights - and wrongs

December 30, 2008

A judge, a JC columnist and a rabbi debated different aspects of human rights at a League of Jewish Women forum at the Liberal Jewish Synagogue, St John’s Wood.

Judge Dawn Freedman gave legislative examples of how the Human Rights Act has been interpreted, citing the controversial plan for 42-day pre-charge detention of terror suspects and the retention of DNA samples of people who had not been convicted.


Masorti will take the train to New York

By Clarissa Sebag-Montefiore, December 30, 2008

Fifteen Masorti members identified as future leaders of the movement will be travelling to New York as part of a training venture.

The group will also undergo professional leadership training sessions in the UK and theological tuition by rabbis as part of the five-month Atid Hadash, or New Future, programme Masorti is funding.


Conference is full of Eastern promise

December 30, 2008

The first winter conference of East (East Anglian Synagogues Together) brought 73 adults and 11 children from 13 shuls to the Suffolk village of Ditchingham, near Bungay.

It was an apposite location as Bungay features on maps from the Middle Ages as a centre of Jewish life and activity.

Israel and its impact on British Jewry was the theme and guest speakers included Zionist Federation president Eric Moonman and small communities minister Reverend Malcolm Weisman.


Brigade signs up for the Duke’s award

December 30, 2008

Over 300 Jewish high school students have enrolled for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award through a Jewish Lads’ and Girls’ Brigade promotional drive.

The biggest number, 150, are from JFS. Forty-five pupils have joined the scheme from Immanuel College, 30 from Hasmonean, 27 from Menorah and 20 apiece from Yavneh College and King Solomon. More are joining up from from King David in Manchester.

New JLGB award co-ordinator Daniel Seedburgh looks forward to helping to prepare entrants “for expeditions which include map-reading skills, camping and outdoor cooking and first-aid”.


Care home VIPs at Spurs

December 23, 2008

Four Jewish Care residents with a combined age of 337 were guests of Spurs for the Uefa Cup match with Spartak Moscow at White Hart Lane last Thursday.

Bernard Reiss, 83, Howard Boyers, 94, Harry Spicer, 86 and Frieda Depreli, 74, together with their carers from the Lady Sarah Cohen home in Friern Barnet, enjoyed the 2-2 draw as part of a Spurs outreach programme. The match brought back happy memories for Mr Spicer, who said: “I haven’t been to the ground for so many years. Though I can no longer attend the games, my son does.”


MP is a candle-lighting house guest

December 23, 2008

Higher Education Minister and Tottenham MP David Lammy lit the first Chanucah candle in the home of one of his constituents on Sunday.

The event was in the house of Shmuel Davidsohn, executive director of the Chaverim youth group, where Mr Lammy was joined by other community members, rabbis and local politicians.

“It was the most brilliant day,” Mr Davidsohn reported. “It is always a pleasure to know that people in the government are supporting our community.”


Lottery chief checks up on museum’s £4.2m windfall

By Clarissa Sebag-Montefiore, December 23, 2008

New Heritage Lottery Fund chairman Jenny Abramsky visited a building site at the Jewish Museum in Camden last Thursday to see how it is spending a £4.2 million HLF grant.

The cash is helping to fund a £9 million extension to the musuem, currently split between premises in Camden and Finchley, although the Camden site is closed because of the redevelopment. The plan is to merge the collections on the enlarged Camden site, which will have the space for temporary exhibits.