The Diary

Horse with kosher pedigree

By Simon Rocker, June 16, 2011

There are already race horses called Menorah and Mezuzah but here is another that happens to have a hoof in the Jewish stable - Frankel, who triumphed in the St James Palace Stakes at Ascot this week, remaining unbeaten.

The champion was named after a leading American trainer, Bobby Frankel, who died a couple of years ago and whose parents ran a kosher catering business.

Frankel's owner is

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A Prince on the menu

By Simon Rocker, June 16, 2011

The Board of Deputies rounds off its 250th anniversary celebrations next month with a dinner, graced by a royal guest.

The Board wants to keep his identity under wraps. But it's an open secret.

Here's a clue: he is heir to the throne, his wife is a duchess but they are not the couple who just got married.

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No freedom for Dylan

By Simon Rocker, June 16, 2011

He is the world's best-known bard but Bob Dylan is not quite big enough for Haringey, the London borough where he bought a house.

The council has rejected a proposal to make him a freeman, saying the honour was reserved only for those who made outstanding contributions to local life.

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Meet the hands-on minister

By Simon Rocker, June 16, 2011

You don't need to bring a rabbi to the classroom when you can keep children entertained with one of these religious leaders produced by educational aid suppliers TTS.

And there are probably one or two congregations thinking this might make a pleasant change in the pulpit, too.

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The chaplain's soccer past

By Simon Rocker, June 10, 2011

At least one rabbi would have rejoiced at QPR's promotion to the Premier League: Rabbi Ariel Friedlander, who is set to become Liberal Judaism's first designated university chaplain. Because, before the rabbinate, she used to be one of the club's official photographers.

She started going to Loftus Road as a child to watch games with her father, the late Rabbi Albert Friedlander.

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Hague's date with deputies

By Simon Rocker, June 10, 2011

Back from Benghazi, William Hague can now look forward to his long-awaited meeting next Thursday with a delegation from the Board of Deputies. Long-awaited by the Board, that is.

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The MP who's a mensch

By Simon Rocker, June 10, 2011

Conservative MP and chick-lit author Louise Bagshawe, who took the BBC to task over its sparse coverage of the Fogel family murders earlier this year, has officially become a Mensch.

She married Peter Mensch, manager of Metallica and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, in a private ceremony in Manhattan over the parliamentary recess.

Will we be seeing Mrs Mensch in shul on High Holy Days now?

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Stamping on the amps

By Simon Rocker, June 10, 2011

Time for over-amplified bands who turn simchas into aural assault courses finally to face the music - from the Beth Din of London's Union of Orthodox Hebrew Congregations.

The rabbis have issued a ruling repeating experts' warnings that loud music can damage your ears and telling party hosts to ask the band to keep the volume down to reasonable levesl - or else suffer a deduction in their fee.

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Stripped to his last assets

By Simon Rocker, June 10, 2011

Disgraced financier Bernie Madoff's boxer shorts fetched $200 at an auction in Florida the other day to help raise compensation for his victims. That's what you might really call short-selling.

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Bagel fiend is unmasked

By Simon Rocker, June 2, 2011

A hooded graffiti artist with a bone to pick over non-authentic bagels has confused shoppers with mysterious "Reclaim the Bagel" graffiti. The "clean graffiti", created by cleaning a pattern into pavements in Golders Green, Edgware and Radlett promoted a campaign against inferior bagels in favour of the boiled variety.

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