UK news

Rabbi criticises Beth Din over women's Torah ban

By Simon Rocker, December 9, 2014

A senior United Synagogue rabbi has criticised its rabbinic authorities for stopping women from reading from the Torah.

As reported in last week’s JC, Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis and the London Beth Din refused permission for a group of women at Borehamwood and Elstree Synagogue to leyn on Simchat Torah.


Why charity head had to cancel Dave Whelan talk

By Josh Jackman, December 8, 2014

The chairman of a charity who asked Dave Whelan to speak at a prestigious event has expressed his disappointment at being forced to cancel the invitation 24 hours later.

Brian White, head of Manchester Jewish Community Care, wanted to give the Wigan Athletic chairman a chance to apologise for his remarks that Jews are “shrewd people” who “chase money more than everybody else”.


Joshua Ross wins JW3 Jewish Comedian of the Year competition

By Naomi Firsht, December 8, 2014

Award-winning comedian Joshua Ross won his second accolade in as many months when he was crowned Jewish Comedian of the Year at the weekend.

Mr Ross, 28, from Barnet, beat five other hopefuls in the final to win £1,000 and a paid spot at JW3’s Hava Nagiggle comedy club.


Finchley Synagogue cancels talk by controversial academic Mordechai Kedar

By Simon Rocker, December 8, 2014

A leading United Synagogue has cancelled a talk tomorrow night by a controversial Israeli academic.

Dr Mordechai Kedar, of Bar-Ilan University, who is here on a speaking tour organised by the Zionist Federation, was due to speak at Finchley United Synagogue.


Chasidic school impresses Ofsted

By Simon Rocker, December 8, 2014

An independent Chasidic school in Stamford Hill, north London, has received a glowing report from Ofsted.

Talmud Torah Machzikei Hadass, which is run by the Belz Chasidic group with 533 boys aged from three to 16, was rated good overall.

The behaviour of pupils as well as the schools’ attention to their care and safety was ranked outstanding, as was its early years section.


FA charges Balotelli over Instagram post

By Josh Jackman, December 5, 2014

Mario Balotelli has been charged by the Football Association for the allegedly antisemitic post he reblogged on Instagram.

A statement on the governing body’s website said: “It is alleged the Liverpool player breached FA Rule E3[1] in that his posting was abusive and/or insulting and/or improper.


Nigel Farage: Muslims to blame for antisemitism

By Josh Jackman, December 5, 2014

Ukip leader Nigel Farage has blamed Muslims for what he called “a sharp rise in antisemitism” in Britain and Europe.

Speaking during his weekly phone-in show on London’s LBC Radio, Mr Farage told a caller from Highgate: “I have detected quite a sharp rise in antisemitism, not just in this country, but across the rest of Europe too.


Balotelli tells FA he is victim of racist abuse

By Josh Jackman, December 5, 2014

Mario Balotelli has submitted examples of racist abuse he has faced online as part of his observations to the Football Association.

The Liverpool striker has until 6pm today to give the FA investigation an explanation for his post on Instagram earlier this week which said Nintendo character Mario “grabs coins like a Jew”.


Feminist group founder is training to be a 'rabbi'

December 5, 2014

The founder of the UK branch of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance, Dina Brawer, has enrolled at the first yeshivah to ordain women as spiritual leaders for modern Orthodox communities.

Graduates of the four-year programme at New York's Yeshivat Maharat are called "maharat", considered by many as rabbis in all but name.


FA gives Dave Whelan extra time to respond to racism charge

By Josh Jackman, December 4, 2014

Dave Whelan has been given another week by the Football Association to respond to a charge of racism.

The Wigan Athletic chairman facing action over his comments that Jews are “shrewd people” who “chase money more than everybody else”.