The Diary

Chai hopes for artist Amy

By chris, March 26, 2015

BBC One's amateur art competition, The Big Painting Challenge (they could hardly call it The Great British Brush-Off), reaches its climax on Sunday.

And carrying heimishe hopes will be Essex-born Amy Goldring, 29, who has sported a Chai necklace throughout the contest.

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They're Biden their time

By chris, March 26, 2015

Is there a word for it - being taken taking a selfie? Here is Board of Deputies president Vivian Wineman (right) about to snap himself with United States Vice-President Joe Biden at a World Jewish Congress meeting.

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Winning Warsi

By chris, March 26, 2015

LibDem MP David Ward's tweet that he'd "probably" have fired rockets at Israel if he lived in Gaza failed to win lobby group Westminster Public Affairs' most influential tweet of the year award. But small consolation - the winner was Baroness Warsi announcing she was quitting the government over Gaza.

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Bereft of Ben

By chris, March 26, 2015

A bold choice to have British comedian James Corden host a top American talk show but it's paid off judging by early reaction to the Late Late Show's new host. Happy news too for Ben Winston, who has gone to California as a co-producer - but what will kosher restaurants in Golders Green do without him and his celebrity patronage?

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TV dinner

March 19, 2015

Fans of the Channel 4 sitcom Friday Night Dinner can enjoy a live version - at London's JW3 in May. The centre has arranged a screening of two episodes, followed by a Friday-night dinner and discussion with writer Robert Popper plus actors Simon Bird, Tom Rosenthal and Tracy-Ann Oberman.

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Shabbat every day for skiers

March 19, 2015

Every morning, tourists at one of Switzerland's swankiest ski resorts wake up to snow, the magnificent Alps - and two freshly baked challot.

Guests at Verbier's Montpelier Hotel are treated to the Shabbat bread every day of the week alongside less kosher delights, such as pork sausages, bacon and cheese wrapped in ham.

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Laura back in poll position

March 19, 2015

Earlier this month, there were whispers that Laura Marks was reconsidering whether to seek a second term as vice-president of the Board of Deputies.

Now the Mitzvah Day founder has removed doubts and confirmed she will compete in the May poll, advancing a "positive, collective, outward-facing agenda in these difficult times".

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Fellas under umbrellas

March 19, 2015

Historian Simon Schama and London Mayor Boris Johnson (centre) were among guests taking shelter at the unveiling of a memorial to 9/11 in London this week.

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Sweet charity

March 19, 2015

Which Tory MP was blown away by the community's generosity at a recent charity dinner? During the auction to raise money for children with life-threatening illnesses, he was overheard telling his wife: "I don't get how people can call Jews stingy - look at what they are giving to have dinner with Craig David."

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Dancing down Baker Street

March 12, 2015

The young Charedi bride and groom walk into the banqueting hall, the band strikes up. And what do they play? A snatch of Baker Street. Why the 1970s hit single has become a popular fanfare at frum weddings in London I've no idea, but hat tip to Orthodox blogger If You Tickle Us for noticing it.

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