Cohen of the Cotswolds

April 22, 2009

There are only about 1100 people in the idyllic town of Burford, the “gateway to the Cotswolds.” The influential Forbes magazine counts Burford, a mediaeval centre, as the sixth most perfect place in Europe, only slightly trailing Tuscany, Cephalonia and Rome.

So no-one should be surprised that its mayor could be described as the only Jew in the village. He is David Cohen.

Mr Cohen, who runs two shops in the Cotswolds, with his wife Jan, selling embroidery and crafts, confidently describes himself as “Burford’s first Jewish mayor”. He is in the final year of his second three-year term and is hoping for a third stint.

The son of founders of Brighton’s Reform Synagogue, who was the first barmitzvah there 46 years ago, describes life 20 miles west of Oxford as “beautiful and fulfilling. You feel like you are on holiday every morning you wake up”.

Last updated: 6:37pm, April 22 2009