Long-time members of the two Kingston synagogues have been honoured as community champions by the local mayor in an annual award scheme.
Former Kingston Liberal Synagogue president Judy Thwaites received her award for “the impact of her initiative to set up the Kingston Holocaust Memorial Day Trust”. Together with fellow KLS member Fleur Standring, another 2013 award recipient, she established the trust in 2007 to educate local pupils about the Holocaust.
What started as a one-day event has expanded to five-and-a-half days of workshops, this year attended by more than 1,100 students and involving more than 40 volunteers from the Kingston Liberal and United synagogues.
Ms Standring was honoured for her “tireless work” for the Kingston Interfaith Forum and the Kingston Race and Equalities Council. Her forum colleague and Kingston Synagogue member Sydney Assor received an award for his “dedicated and selfless work in building bridges and relations between different faiths”. Moroccan-born Mr Assor was nominated by the local Muslim community, which has accorded him the honorary title of “sheikh”.
The award to Dr Alan Lyons recognises his 45 years of service to Kingston Synagogue and the local community.
After receiving her accolade from the mayor, Councillor Mary Heathcote, Ms Standring said: “I saw the award primarily as a further way of raising the profile of our HMD workshops — and, hopefully, of promoting a perception of us as a minority group contributing something to the wider community.”