Leeds

Leeds mitzvah chain adds link

October 14, 2010

The Leeds Mitzvah Chain completed another leg of its journey across the community.

Geoff Caplan, chairman of Donisthorpe Hall, handed over the mitzvah menorah baton on behalf of the care home to Rabbi Jason Kleiman of Beth Hamidrash Hagadol Synagogue.

The mitzvah project, organised by Leeds emissary Gilad Amit, aims at motivating communal organisations to perform good deeds for each other.

Donisthorpe received the baton last month from Sinai Synagogue's Roger Lawford at a musical entertainment given at the home by Sinai members.

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Time travel for Leeds kids

By Jessica Elgot, October 14, 2010

A new Leeds museum where children can go "back in time" to experience life in a shtetl has opened to the public.

The Jewish Heritage Centre for Children in Moortown, Leeds, has been created by Leeds Lubavitch education director Shoshana Angyalfi and her project co-ordinator Ruth Bell. The Heritage Lottery Fund have donated £275,000 for the project.

Mrs Bell said: "We have had around 90 visitors over the weekend, and three schools, a college and a Women's Institute group are booked to come.

"People in the community love it, you can't tear the children away from playing here.

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Jail for pensioner who battered biker with walking stick

By Jessica Elgot, September 29, 2010

A pensioner who was called a "f---ing Jew" by a 6ft 3in biker has been jailed for 18 months after he retaliated by smashing him in the face with a walking stick.

Keith Degroot, 66, who lived in sheltered housing in Leeds, was drinking in the Duck and Drake pub in the city centre with another regular, Stephen Hall - a member of the Blue Angel chapter of the Hells Angels.

During a row, Mr Hall knocked off Mr Degroot's glasses.

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Play area tribute to Leeds cancer victim

September 28, 2010

A new play area at Leeds' Deborah Taylor Nursery has been named in honour of its late head teacher Denise Marks, who died of cancer in May, aged 55.

The 150 people who attended Sunday's ceremony heard former Brodetsky Primary head Simon Camby speak of the huge difference Mrs Marks had made to the children.

"Her legacy lives on here at the school she loved so much. I know I am a much richer person for having worked with her," he said. "We have a lot to remember and a lot to celebrate about a life that was well lived."

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Vintage wedding bells in Leeds

By Jessica Elgot, September 21, 2010

An elaborate re-enactment of a traditional Jewish Victorian wedding ceremony is planned to celebrate 150 years of the Leeds Jewish community.

Now organisers are seeking volunteers to play the bride, groom and guests at the mock ceremony on November 28 in the public atrium of Leeds museum.

Organised by Makor, the "wedding" will be officiated by Rabbi Jason Kleiman of Beth Hamidrash Hagadol synagogue and the chazan will be Albert Chait from Leeds United Hebrew Congregation. Couples, married or not, and friends are sought to volunteer to play the part of bride and groom.

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Attempt to boost young community in Leeds

By Jonathan Kalmus, September 21, 2010

The Leeds Jewish community has appointed a development executive as part of a strategic plan to boost community life and positively market the advantages of living there.

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Leeds IDF festival experiment

By Jonathan Kalmus, September 16, 2010

An Israeli Defence Forces chaplain has brought overseas aid to the experimental Rosh Hashanah programme run by Leeds' Beth Hamidrash Hagadol Synagogue.

The shul's Rabbi Jason Kleiman said American-born Rabbi Shalom Hammer "gave a very powerful presentation about role of observant soldier in the IDF. It was the first time shiurim ran alongside services. The feedback has been very positive." The experimental programme had found favour with many who would not otherwise engage in services.

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Ray Rivlin is inspired by her disabled son to come up with a more inclusive Haggadah

By Candice Krieger, September 16, 2010

Dublin's Ray Rivlin has created her own simplified version of the Haggadah.

Inspired by her son Alan, who is a resident of the Leeds Rainbow Project, Mrs Rivlin decided to modify the Haggadah to make it more accessible to people with learning difficulties.

She tells People: "During Pesach last year I took the second Seder for the residents and simplified it for them. They seemed to like it and it struck me that it would be a good idea to write it down."

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Pimm's and more for Leeds JSoc freshers

By Jennifer Lipman, September 15, 2010

Leeds Jewish Society has organised a series of events to welcome new students during freshers week.

JSoc committee members will be handing out welcome packs and answering questions at stalls at the Leeds University and Leeds Metropolitan University freshers fairs.

They have arranged a “Beer, Pimm's and Narg” launch party at the JSoc house on Tuesday September 21, followed by a barbecue lunch the next day.

To mark the first Shabbat of the new term, the JSoc has also planned a free “Freshers Friday Night Dinner”.

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MP attacks judge on Gaza claim

By Robyn Rosen, August 26, 2010

The MP for Leeds North East, Fabian Hamilton, has called for action against the judge who suggested that one of the anti-Israel activists who was acquitted of damaging an arms factory should be awarded the George Cross.

Judge George Bathurst-Norman made the comments in his summing up of a trial last month.

Mr Hamilton, who said it is becoming increasingly difficult to defend Israel in parliament, wrote to the Attorney-General last week.

He said: "What makes this trial most disturbing is the way in which the judge used his summary to promote his own political views about Israel.

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