East End

Simon Marks head resigns

By Robyn Rosen, November 12, 2009

Simon Marks Primary head Nicole Delamere has resigned. In a letter sent this week, parents of pupils at the Hackney school were informed that she had quit after just a year in charge to “pursue her career in education in a different setting”.

When the head did not return after half term, the school originally claimed she was on “sick leave”.

Deputy head Norma Blair-Clayden has taken over as acting head. Parents have also been notified that year five teacher Rohan Plunkett will be leaving in December.


Hackney school headteacher disapperance worries parents

By Robyn Rosen, November 5, 2009

Parents at Simon Marks Jewish Primary School in Hackney have complained of being “kept in the dark” over the situation of head teacher Nicole Delamere.

Ms Delamere, who took charge in September 2008, did not return to school after half term and parents say they have not been told why.

Speaking anonymously, one parent said: “When Ms Delamere was sick in the summer, they told us, but this time no one has told us anything.” Letters were being sent out by deputy head Norma Blair, with no explanation as to why they were not coming from Ms Delamere.


The Only Jew in the Village

By JCC, October 20, 2009
Thursday 5 November


Bevis Marks chiefs to face down rebels

By Simon Rocker, October 15, 2009

Supporters of the suspended rabbi of Bevis Marks Synagogue in east London are set for a showdown with Sephardi leaders at a special meeting next Thursday.

More than 40 members of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews’ Congregation have backed a motion of no confidence in the mahamad, the executive committee of the congregation.

But the mahamad has tabled its own motion, calling for support among the wider membership, and saying that any embarrassment to the congregation is because of “irresponsible comments” to the media from some Bevis Marks members.



By JSG, October 12, 2009
Sunday 15 November
11:00am - 5:00pm


Chief Rabbi to become Lord Sacks of Aldgate

By Simon Rocker, September 11, 2009

The Chief Rabbi will officially become a peer on October 27 when he enters the House of Lords as Lords Sacks of Aldgate.

He will be sponsored by Lord Winston and the former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey.

Explaining why he had chosen to nominate the East End of London district, he said; “My late father sold cloth in Commercial Road and my grandmother ran Frumkins wine shop. I wanted not to forget my roots. That’s where I used to help out help when I was a child and where my earliest memories are.”


Primary chair 'forced out over JCoSS'

By Simon Rocker, September 10, 2009

The chairman of Simon Marks Jewish Primary in Hackney has been forced to step down because, he claims, of his support for linking it with the new cross-communal Jewish Community Secondary School.

Simon Marks’s foundation body, the Scopus Jewish Educational Trust, has confirmed its decision not to reappoint Peter Kessler as a foundation governor after his three-year term expired.

He attributed the trust’s action to his backing for making Simon Marks a feeder for JCoSS, which is due to open in East Barnet next September.


Congregation of Jacob

September 3, 2009

THE CONGREGATION of Jacob has completed repair work to the frontage of its Commercial Road synagogue thanks to a £5,000 grant from the Veolia Environmental Trust. A phased restoration project which started in 2001 has also included work on the ladies’ gallery and the creation of an area for study and communal events. Members have raised over £30,000 towards the improvements.


Bevis Marks Rabbi’s hearing delayed

By Simon Rocker, August 20, 2009

The executive of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews’ Congregation has postponed a disciplinary hearing for the rabbi of Bevis Marks Synagogue in the East End of London because he is understood to be on sick leave.

Rabbi Natan Asmoucha received a final warning after a first hearing two weeks ago when the mahamad (executive) said he had taken part without authorisation in an interfaith demonstration against high bank interest rates last month.


Rabbi faces second discipline hearing

By Simon Rocker, August 13, 2009

Sephardi leaders have been accused of victimising the rabbi of Britain’s oldest synagogue, Bevis Marks, after demanding he face a second disciplinary hearing in a fortnight.

Rabbi Natan Asmoucha, who was suspended three weeks ago, was issued with a final warning by the mahamad (executive) of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews’ Congregation over his involvement last month in a march against high bank interest rates.

But members of Bevis Marks are in uproar after learning that the mahamad had extended his suspension on Friday and made new allegations of gross misconduct against him.