Community life

High value appointment

January 8, 2009

Professor Graham Zellick has been appointed chairman of the Valuation Tribunal for England.

Although the post is effective from this month, the tribunal will not come into being until the autumn, when it will replace the existing 56 local valuation tribunals dealing with appeals on council tax and business rates.

The 60-year-old barrister recently completed his term of office as chairman of the Criminal Cases Review Commission and was previously vice-chancellor of the University of London, principal of Queen Mary and Westfield College and an Electoral Commissioner.

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Cemetery gets a facelift

January 8, 2009

A Jewish cemetery may soon be added to the Liverpool Heritage Trail following a successful restoration project.

Addressing the Leeds branch of the Jewish Genealogical Society at the Sinai Synagogue, project manager Saul Marks outlined the efforts made to restore the derelict Deane Road cemetery site to its former glory.
The Merseyside cemetery had been a target for vandals and fly-tippers before the project was launched in 2003 with support from environmental regeneration charity the Groundwork Trust.

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Chai high on clarity

January 8, 2009

A “vast improvement” in the clarity of Chai Cancer Care’s annual report has been reported by Intelligent Giving, the online advisory service assessing charities’ transparency.

Intelligent Giving noted that Chai — one of the three beneficiaries of this year’s JC Charity Appeal — now offered “a clear explanation of its achievements and plans”.

Awarding it 66 per cent for the quality of its reporting — up from 36 per cent — Intelligent Giving suggested that “more information about how it is governed and greater financial detail would push the score even higher”.

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Raising the stakes at Youth Aliyah

January 8, 2009

New Youth Aliyah Child Rescue executive director Martin Mason intends to raise the profile of the 75-year-old charity, which supports five villages in Israel.

Mr Mason, 54, took up the role this week, having assisted Youth Aliyah on a voluntary basis after closing his trade catalogues’ publishing company.

He produced the brochure for the charity’s anniversary dinner at St James’s Palace in November, held in conjunction with the International Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and hosted by Prince Edward.

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Home improvements

January 8, 2009

Work has started on a £1.5 million redevelopment programme at Edinburgh House, Wembley, the Sephardi Home for the Aged.

The scheme will allow residents of the second-floor high dependency unit to move downstairs, where they will have a new lounge and dining area. The current high dependency unit will be replaced with four new bedrooms.

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Immanuel pupils’ Polish project

January 8, 2009

A group of pupils from Bushey’s Immanuel College have visited Poland as part of the school’s charitable project to improve the lives of Polish Jewry.

Prior to the trip, sixth-formers had raised money for a display fridge for the kosher shop in Cracow and items for the Jewish school in Warsaw.
A poignant part of the itinerary was the unveiling of a new plaque at the Jewish cemetery in Lublin commemorating the 100-plus local orphans and many elderly residents of the Lublin Jewish Shelter murdered by the Nazis.

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More lessons from Shoah

January 8, 2009

Almost 3,000 sixth-formers and teachers will participate in the Holocaust Educational Trust’s 2009 Lessons from Auschwitz programme.

Through funding from the Department for Children, Schools and Families, the HET is offering places on the scheme to two pupils from every secondary school and college. In November, the Scottish Government announced funding for its own schools.

As well as visiting the death camp site, participants attend orientation and follow-up seminars. They will then be expected to share their experiences with fellow pupils and the wider
community.

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Bus route plea to Boris

By Craig Silver, January 8, 2009

London Assembly member Brian Coleman is urging Boris Johnson to extend the 210 bus route from Brent Cross to serve Stamford Hill Jewry.

Speaking before next week’s plenary session, the Barnet and Camden representative said: “By running through Golders Green and all the way to Stamford Hill, it will connect families and friends and enable them to get to community events in those areas.” The 210 currently runs to Finsbury Park.

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Hardship fund started with rabbis’ donations

January 8, 2009

Liberal Judaism rabbis are donating one per cent of their salary to a hardship fund to help congregants affected by the credit crunch.

Boosted by contributions from others within the movement, the fund has raised £8,000 in little over a month.

The idea is to assist those who cannot be helped through other means. A movement spokeswoman suggested that as well as helping those who had lost jobs, the Pe’ah Fund could benefit elderly people whose relatives could no longer support them financially.

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A hit with Ali, and with the league

January 8, 2009

Punching Muhammad Ali, being cared for by Indira Gandhi and avoiding sniper fire in Bosnia were among tales from a journalistic career recounted by Dame Ann Leslie to League of Jewish Women members.

Questioned by league president Ella Marks, the Daily Mail journalist said she had struck the legendary boxer to attract his attention. The late Indian prime minister had come to her aid when she was sick during an interview and a loud outburst of foul language had stopped the Bosnian sniper in his tracks.

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