UK news

Envoy's first move? Enter the Shalit tent

By Jennifer Lipman, September 21, 2010

The new British Ambassador to Israel and his wife Celia have visited the parents of kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit at their protest tent in Jerusalem.

Matthew Gould, who arrived in Israel just after Rosh Hashanah, said that Prime Minister David Cameron had asked him to go and see Noam and Aviva Shalit as soon as he arrived in Israel.


JCC begins demolition

By Marcus Dysch, September 21, 2010

Demolition of a former car showroom to make way for the £50 million Jewish Community Centre for London - British Jewry's biggest ever capital project - is due to begin this month.

Demolition experts will erect hoardings around the old Mercedes showroom on London's Finchley Road before starting the lengthy deconstruction process.

The new 80,000 sq ft JCC will cater for Jews across the religious and political spectrum and is due to open in 2013.


New chapter in restitution opened as Catholic manuscript is sent home

By Jessica Elgot, September 21, 2010

A looted 12th-century manuscript is to be returned to Italy, the first under a new law designed to restitute art work in British museums and galleries stolen during the Holocaust.

The intricately decorated missal, a manuscript for Catholic mass, is to return to the cathedral in Benevento.

The missal was acquired by a British soldier from a secondhand book-seller in Naples in 1944, and subsequently bought by the British Museum at an auction in 1947.

Looted by Axis forces in Italy before turning up in the bookshop, the manuscript was later transferred to the British Library.


M&S drop their lingerie as Succah ad sparks offence

By Leon Symons, September 21, 2010

An advertisement for women's underwear placed next to a shop selling equipment for Succot in Edgware, north-west London, is to be replaced.

The hoarding showed a scantily-clad woman advertising underwear for Marks &Spencer and was situated directly above an outlet of a temporary Sukkah Mart store, at the corner of Edgwarebury Lane and Station Road.

Na'ama Heller, the shop's manager, said: "We opened last week and the advertisement appeared over the weekend right next to the shop.


Griffin sparks angry demo in Liverpool

By Jonathan Kalmus, September 21, 2010

A surprise appearance by British National Party leader Nick Griffin in Liverpool city centre only served to highlight the message of a meeting against antisemitism at the Liberal Democrat conference on Monday.


How clucky: chicken shortage is averted

By Jonathan Kalmus, September 21, 2010

A shortage of kosher chickens in Manchester has worried consumers in the run up to Succot after a leg disease was found among poultry last week.

Around 30 per cent of birds had to be rejected after the disease, which is not harmful to humans, spread through chicken stocks in abattoirs in Manchester and Southport, which serve the Greater Manchester community.


MEPs reveal voting plans on shechitah

By Robyn Rosen, September 21, 2010

British MEPs who sit on a committee preparing legislation on labelling kosher meat are torn over how they will vote.

Linda McAvan, Labour MEP for Yorkshire and the Humber and a member of the committee, has said she will vote in favour of an amendment to the provision of food information in consumer legislation. It would mean all meat products derived from animals that have been slaughtered by shechitah would be labelled as "meat from slaughter without stunning".


Peer praises Chief Rabbi for 'beautiful' Pope reception

By Simon Rocker, September 21, 2010

Lord Patten, the co-ordinator of the Pope's visit, said that one of its most moving moments were the Chief Rabbi's words at Friday's interfaith meeting.

Lord Patten, assessing the visit, singled out the "the most beautifully expressed statement about the relationship between faiths" made by Lord Sacks.


New push to confront Israel hate

By Leon Symons, September 21, 2010

A leading Anglo-Israeli educational organisation is preparing new strategies to confront campaigns aimed at increasing ill-will towards Israel.

John Levy, director of the Friends of Israel Educational Foundation (FoI), said that he anticipated "a very difficult year ahead for us all. We now confront intense new campaigns against Israel which are beginning to corrode 'goodwill' towards the state."

He said FoI would focus on four main areas: secondary schools in the 16-19 age group; university academics; the Church and creative arts.


Hague will be guest at UJIA

By Marcus Dysch, September 21, 2010

Foreign Secretary William Hague has been confirmed as the guest speaker at UJIA's annual fundraising dinner.

Mr Hague will join around 700 people at dinner at the London Hilton hotel in Park Lane, central London, on November 8.

He is also expected to visit Israel that month on his delayed first official visit to the region as Foreign Secretary.