There were more than 100 sessions for the 600 visitors to Sunday’s Harrow Limmud with a choice of speakers ranging from a Holocaust survivor to a senior researcher for anti-extremist think tank, the Quilliam Foundation.
The survivor was Olympic weightlifter Ben Helfgott, the Quilliam representative Usama Hasan. Labour peer Lord Glasman and seven local rabbis were also among the speakers and performers included The Autistix, an inclusive rock band led by Jack Beaver Duggan and Saul Zur-Szpiro, who both have disabilities. In one of the practical sessions, Norwood clients demonstrated how to make mezuzah cases.
Denise Phillips shared some of her cookery secrets; those who came to dance were taught Israeli-style; and there was the opportunity to crochet kippot.
Held at Heathfield School for Girls in Pinner, the Limmud attracted participants aged from three to 93. It was organised by volunteers from across the Jewish spectrum under the leadership of Harrow residents Ruth Soetendorp and Doreen Samuels.
Ms Samuels highlighted the breadth of the musical programme, “which ranged from choral to rock, Indian to Israel and Yiddish to the Beatles”.
Food left over from the day was collected by a local church for distribution to a homeless shelter.