The obscenity of extravagance

By Geoffrey Alderman, April 23, 2015

First, the bad news. I have to tell you that the quote of £55,000 obtained by the JC for a slap-up kosher wedding amounts to a considerable underestimate of the probable true cost.


Synagogues help to plan cut-price celebrations

By Josh Jackman, April 23, 2015

Rabbis from across the communal spectrum have criticised the "shameful" amount spent on kosher wedding celebrations following our special report last week, which calculated that an average kosher wedding costs £130 a minute.


US rabbi: 'Do you really need a £100k wedding?'

By Simon Rocker, April 23, 2015

Ministers might be so relieved that their congregants are planning to marry within the faith that they might be reluctant to criticise the wedding arrangements.

But extravagant celebrations fly in the face of traditional modesty, according to the head of a major north London United synagogue, speaking on condition of anonymity.


The £130-a-minute simchah: Are we wedded to excess?

By Josh Jackman and Sandy Rashty, April 16, 2015

It should be the happiest day of your life - and will likely be the most expensive. Wedding planners say that the cost of a kosher celebration can comfortably exceed £50,000. Our £55,000 wedding quote works out at an eye-popping £130-a-minute for a seven hour event.


Popular London simchah venue to close

By Rosa Doherty, December 2, 2014

A popular London venue which has hosted simchahs for more than 40 years is to close next year.

The Royal Majestic Banqueting Suite in Willesden will shut in April when owner Helen Goide retires.

Mrs Goide said: “I have so much enjoyed serving the community all these years and it has been a privilege and a great pleasure.”


Bride faces life apart from her husband

By Rosa Doherty, October 2, 2014

A couple have been forced to start married life apart because the bride has been refused entry into the UK.

Israeli Sivan Ben Abu wed Londoner Oliver Stopnitzky in Tel Aviv last week, but Mr Stopnitzky returned home alone after the ceremony.

Mrs Stopnitzky said: "I'm devastated and he is inconsolable.


There goes the bride

By Rosa Doherty, September 18, 2014

Guests celebrated into the night at a wedding reception notable for one absence - the bride.

Israeli Sivan Ben Abu, 29, wasn't there because immigration officers had stopped her entering the UK.

She'd flown from Tel Aviv to Luton Airport for what should have been a civil ceremony with her British fiancé Oliver Stopnitzky.


Israeli wedding turns nasty

By Nathan Jeffay, March 13, 2014

A wedding in Petach Tikva, Israel, took a nasty turn last week when an over-enthusiastic groom stamped too hard on the glass and ended up with large pieces perforating his foot.

Medics arrived on the scene within minutes, and were ordered by the hosts to change to plain clothes to avoid panicking the guests.


Israel raises marriage age to 18

By Charlotte Oliver, November 5, 2013

The Israeli government has raised the legal marriage age from 17 to 18, following a fierce debate that split the Knesset and infuriated strictly Orthodox members of parliament.

The bill, which was introduced by MKs across various parties, was passed with 55 in favour and 11 opposed. It is intended to target strictly Orthodox sectors of society.


Go for it, Paula, you go, girl

By Tracy-Ann Oberman, November 1, 2013

It’s the time of year when the batmitzvah invitations start arriving. We have received four, propped up on the mantelpiece looking pretty in an array of matching black, white and fuschia. I love a batmitzvah when a “daughter of commandment” is now responsible for her decisions and actions in life .