Rabbi Alan Burns, first minister of Chigwell and Hainault Synagogue and a former minister of West End Great Synagogue in central London, has died at the age of 75.
London-born Rabbi Burns began his career as a teacher at the Yesodeh Hatorah school in Stamford Hill. In 1963, on hearing that a newly-formed community in Chigwell needed someone to lead services, he offered himself for the job, walking up from his Ilford home every Shabbat to do so. He formally became the congregation's minister when the Chigwell community merged with the neighbouring and longer-established Hainault Synagogue in 1968. He remained at Chigwell and Hainault Synagogue until 1975.
The funeral was on Sunday at Cheshunt Cemetery.