UK news

Students' great shul crawl

By Marcus Dysch, September 22, 2011

Two Oxford University students have set out on an ambitious project to review every synagogue in Britain.

Danny Kessler and Joshua Felberg plan light-hearted assessments of nearly 400 communities, based on the standard of the kiddush, the rabbi's sermon, decorum, and "peculiar customs".

The friends served as co-presidents of Oxford Jewish Society last year and came up with the idea after see

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Muslim pupils look to Israel for pen pals

By Jessica Elgot, September 22, 2011

Many children have pen pals with whom they swap notes on family life, pets, hobbies and school work.

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Uproar at invitations to Gaza-twinning ceremony

By Jessica Elgot, September 22, 2011

The chairman of Northern Ireland's smallest district council has drawn national criticism for apparently inviting the Mayor of Gaza and members of Gaza City Council to take part in a "twinning ceremony" without consulting fellow councillors.

Padraig McShane, an Independent councillor and chairman of Moyle District Council in Country Antrim has spearheaded the plan to twin Moyle with Gaza and in

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The fifth Beatle

By Jonathan Kalmus, September 22, 2011

A film about the Jewish, gay and drug-addicted manager of the world's most famous music band is to be made in Liverpool.

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Bodyguard threat to businessman

By Zoe Beaty, September 22, 2011

A property mogul sent his 21-stone bodyguard to force a former business partner and fellow member of the Leeds Jewish community into repaying a loan, a court has heard.

Former Leeds United boss Simon Morris, 34, who was heavily in debt after several failed dealings, asked Johnathan Ashworth, 51, to visit Hedley Manton at his office to collect £100,000 he had lent him to buy a house.

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How one man's protest went around the globe

By Marcus Dysch, September 22, 2011

The level of anti-Israel activity on British campuses is "overwhelming" and not enough is being done to combat it, according to a former academic in Islamic studies.

Denis MacEoin, former editor of the Middle East Quarterly, led criticism of one student association which attempted to implement a boycott of Israel earlier this year.

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Herald editor says sorry

By Jessica Elgot, September 22, 2011

A scottish newspaper has apologised after a columnist asked readers to imagine, "If Giffnock was Gaza", deliberately choosing Glasgow's most Jewish area.

Tom Shields, who writes for Newsquest-owned Herald Scotland, said he chose the suburbs of Giffnock and Newton Mearns to compare with Gaza and the West Bank because they contain the highest number of supporters of Israel.

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Ambassador's villa in Israel up for sale

By Anshel Pfeffer and Marcus Dysch, September 22, 2011

The residence of Britain's ambassador to Israel is to be sold, amid plans to move the diplomat to a more modern, accessible property.

The Foreign Office has put the luxurious villa on the market following spending cuts.

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Our ten finest shuls

By Simon Rocker, September 22, 2011

What does Ramsgate have in common with Bradford, Brighton and Liverpool? They are all sites for historic British synagogues which have just been recognised as part of the cultural heritage of Europe.

The country's 10 finest synagogues have been nominated as part of a "Jewish route" across Europe – one of seven cultural routes being created across the continent by the Council of Europe.

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Sometimes reality is our best ally

By Jenni Frazer, September 22, 2011

Israel's new ambassador to the UK, London-born Daniel Taub, pledged this week to do whatever he could to engage people across the political spectrum with the Jewish state - even those who were ostensibly anti-Israel. "Even a short visit to Israel can have a dramatic effect," the ambassador said.

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