UK news

Linking-up and clicking at the bloggers' ball

By Michal Levertov, August 28, 2008

The first international Jewish bloggers convention in Jerusalem last week brought together more than 200 participants from Israel and abroad.

The event, organised by aliyah organisation Nefesh B'Nefesh, was intended to give Jewish bloggers - writers of online diaries - a platform for networking, sharing ideas, experience and tips, as well as getting acquainted with the people behind online destinations such as Oleh Girl or My Right Word.


Father dies moments after seeing his daughter marry

By Candice Krieger, August 28, 2008

A leading communal figure died suddenly at his daughter's wedding on Monday evening.

Michael Rosen, 65, from Pinner, Middlesex, was celebrating the marriage of his daughter Lynne to Robert Dyan at the Grove Hotel in Watford, Hertfordshire, when he collapsed from a suspected heart attack.
One guest said: "He seemed 100 per cent fine. Everything was normal and we were returning to our tables after the Israeli dancing when he collapsed. You could see it was serious because the rabbis started praying."


Students across the country achieve record-breaking GCSE results

By Marcus Dysch, August 26, 2008
Students at Jewish schools across the country have again achieved record-breaking GCSE results.

The majority achieved a 100 per cent pass rate, bettering the national average of 98 per cent.

Pupils at Hasmonean High School in North West London achieved the school's best ever results, with 94 per cent gaining five or more A* to C-grades.

Among the most outstanding achievements was Rebecca Sassoon's 13 A* grades. She was one of 39 students who each received at least 10 A* and A-grades.


British split over push for greater democracy at Claims Conference

By Simon Rocker, August 21, 2008

British representatives to the Claims Conference, the international Holocaust restitution body, are split over whether it should introduce greater democracy.

Paul Edlin, a vice-president of the Board of Deputies and one of its two delegates on the conference board, is among those pressing for change at the New York-based organisation, which distributes hundreds of millions of dollars annually to Holocaust survivors.


Former MP dies at 91

August 21, 2008

Former MP and gay-rights champion Leo Abse has died at the age of 91.

The former Labour MP for Pontypool, and later Torfaen, died at Charing Cross Hospital in West London on Tuesday night after a short illness.

In 1967, Mr Abse guided a Private Member's Bill through Parliament making sex between men legal.

Cardiff-born Mr Abse, elder brother of writer Dannie Abse, was also credited with helping liberalise divorce laws with the 1969 Divorce Reform Act.


Shalit march planned

August 21, 2008
The Zionist Federation is organising a march and meeting in London on September 21 to publicise the plight of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.   


Essex woman knocked down

August 21, 2008
A Chigwell, Essex, mother of three was badly injured after she was knocked down by a car while on holiday in France. Sharon Bowman, 55, was due to be flown home to the UK this week.


Charities ‘not being open enough’

By Dana Gloger, August 21, 2008

Jewish charities are the worst in the country at being transparent and open about their work, according to a survey by an independent agency.

Intelligent Giving (IG), a not-for-profit organisation which monitors charities, has examined this year's accounts and annual reports of around 500 charities, including 23 focused on Jewish causes. Each is given a percentage score after being judged according to a set of 43 criteria.


Ofsted critical of Charedi teachers’ secular lessons

By Simon Rocker, August 21, 2008

More than a third of the strictly Orthodox independent schools which have been inspected this year have been criticised for the quality of their secular education.

In five out of 14 independent Charedi schools so far examined in 2008, Ofsted inspectors have said the secular curriculum lacks breadth or is inadequate.

Although independent schools - unlike state schools - do not have to teach the national curriculum, a change in the law five years ago has brought them under closer government scrutiny.


Racist attack in Llandudno

By Marcus Dysch, August 21, 2008

A man was punched and had his kippah knocked off in what police describe as a racist attack.

The 24-year-old was wrestled to the ground by two men and hit in the face during the assault in Llandudno, North Wales, last week.

He had been walking close to a Chabad-run community centre on the outskirts of the town when the men attacked him. They removed his skullcap before running away.

The victim, who has not been named, was treated for shock and minor injuries.