UK news

You’re furred: Alan Sugar becomes a Lord

By Candice Krieger, July 23, 2009

Sir Alan Sugar took his seat in the House of Lords this week, as Lord Sugar of Clapton in the Borough of Hackney.

He was named as a member of the Upper House by Prime Minister Gordon Brown last month, and will now operate as an “enterprise czar” for the government.

Why Clapton? Lord Sugar, 62, said: “I struck my first business deals on the streets of Clapton as a 12-year-old boy by collecting lemonade bottles for the one penny deposits, and sitting on the main road asking for a penny for the guy.

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Heather Mills: eat kosher with me

By Marcus Dysch and Cecily Woolf, July 23, 2009

It can’t be easy bouncing back from a high-profile divorce and a personality-pounding from the national press — but Heather Mills may just have found a happy, and haimishe, distraction from it all.

Sir Paul McCartney’s ex-wife this week said she had applied to the London Beth Din in an attempt to secure kosher certification for her range of vegan products.

She plans to serve the food, including fake meat, chicken and fish, at a vegan café she has opened in Hove, East Sussex.

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Why war-driven hate is different this time

By Leon Symons, July 23, 2009

The Community Security Trust report for the first six months of 2009 will send a shiver through the Anglo-Jewish community.

The report confirmed — if confirmation were needed — what the CST has maintained for some time: that antisemitic incidents rise whenever there is major violence in the Middle East.

What distinguishes these figures from previous years is that they did not return to what the CST says is “normal” until April, three months after the fighting between Israel and Hamas ended.

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Gaza war sparks worst hate wave ever recorded

By Leon Symons, July 23, 2009

The Community Security Trust recorded more antisemitic incidents in the first six months of 2009 than it has done in any previous entire year.

Between January and June there were 609 incidents. In the whole of 2008 there were 544. The CST has never recorded more than 600 incidents in one year, let alone six months.

The main reason for the rise was the response to Israel’s incursion into Gaza.

The 609 incidents included 77 violent assaults, compared with 45 last year. Two of these, in May, were deemed to be extremely violent attacks, which might have involved a threat to life.

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Gerald Ronson receives university honour

By Jessica Elgot, July 22, 2009

Gerald Ronson, one of the UK’s most successful Jewish businessmen has received an Honorary Doctorate.

Mr Ronson, 70, a property developer, has received his Honorary Doctorate in Civil Law from Northumbria University.

Mr Ronson founded the Heron Group at the age of 17 and by the early 1980s, his company was worth more than £1.5 billion.

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GB through to Maccabiah football final

By Danny Caro in Haifa, July 20, 2009

Maccabiah Games – Day 8

Open football Semi-final : Israel 0 GB 1

A first-half header from captain Sam Sloma put Team Great Britain into the final of the Open Football competition after they claimed a deserved victory over holders Israel in Nawe Sha’anan on Monday afternoon.

Playing in temperatures touching 35 degrees, Sloma met Paul Hakim’s pinpoint cross with a stooping diving header that nestled into the bottom corner.

Sloma said: “I haven’t scored a header since 2000 so it was nice to show people I can use my head as some have doubted my heading ability.

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Baron Sugar of Clapton

By Candice Krieger, July 20, 2009

Sir Alan Sugar took his seat in the House of Lords this afternoon, becoming Lord Sugar of Clapton in the borough of Hackney.

Lord Sugar told the JC: “I struck my first business deals on the streets of Clapton as a 12 year-old boy by collecting lemonade bottles for the 1 pence deposits and sitting on the main road asking for a penny for the guy, so it meant a lot to me to walk into the House of Lords today and collect the title Lord Sugar of Clapton. It was a wonderful day being surrounded by my family and I am only sorry that my mum and dad aren’t around to have witnessed it.

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JFS: Board seeks equality bill redraft

By Leon Symons, July 20, 2009

The Board of Deputies has launched a two-pronged strategy in the wake of the Court of Appeal’s decision that the admissions policy operated by JFS broke the Race Relations Act.

Deputies at Sunday’s plenary meeting in central London were told that if JFS decides to seek leave to appeal to the House of Lords or the Supreme Court, which may be dealing with such matters, the Board will intervene as a friend of the Court to give it guidance on “who is a Jew”.

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Amy Winehouse divorces Blake

By Jessica Elgot, July 17, 2009

Amy Winehouse and her estranged husband Blake Fielder-Civil have called time on their turbulent marriage.

The Rehab singer and her husband were granted a “quickie” divorce on grounds of adultery, which Ms Winehouse admitted.

Mr Fielder-Civil’s divorce papers declared that he found it “intolerable” to live with Winehouse.

The couple have been married since May 2007, but having been living separate lives since Mr Fielder-Civil was imprisoned in June 2008 for perverting the course of justice and GBH with intent.

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Sir Martin Gilbert on Iraq panel

By Simon Rocker, July 16, 2009

Two of British Jewry’s most eminent academics, Sir Martin Gilbert and Sir Lawrence Freedman, have been appointed to the government’s committee of inquiry into the Iraq War.

Sir Lawrence, vice-principal and professor of war studies at King’s College, London, and Sir Martin, whose books include histories of the world wars, are being made privy counsellors.

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