Transfer bonus delights charity

June 4, 2009

The premises of the former Westmount care home in West Hampstead have been donated to Jewish Care, which intends to transfer residents from its Mapesbury Road home in Willesden.

Established in 1976 by Sidney and Elizabeth Corob, Westmount was a kosher facility offering beds on the basis of need, rather than ability to pay. It closed in April 2008 as a result of declining numbers.

Explaining the donation, Mrs Corob said that she and her late husband “wanted to make sure the home could continue to care for members of the Jewish community with the same ethos and quality as before.”


‘Brilliant’ civil servant hit by train

By James Martin, June 3, 2009

The Newcastle Jewish community is mourning the loss of a “brilliant, kind and unassuming young man”, after the death of 32-year-old Adam Rothapel last Tuesday.

Mr Rothapel, private secretary to Minister of Justice Bridget Prentice, died after being hit by a train at Finchley Road station in London.

Mr Rothapel, who lived in West Hampstead, was due to marry Sam Baden, his Australian-born fiancée, in August. He leaves behind his mother, Hilary.


Rabbi Reuven Livingstone takes pay cut

May 14, 2009

Hampstead Garden Suburb honorary officers have refused to take questions on a cut in salary and expenses for minister Rabbi Reuven Livingstone.

There were heated exchanges between the shul’s lay leadership and some of the 200 members at Monday’s annual meeting, following the revelation in the 2009 budget of a halving of expenses to be paid to the rabbi — from £12,660 to £6,000. Combined with a lesser salary, the rabbi’s income will fall by 15 per cent, from an £87,000 package to around £75,000.


Jewish Community Centre attracts a capacity crowd to its "Sing Off"

October 30, 2008

The Jewish Community Centre attracted a capacity crowd to its "Sing Off". Hampstead Town Hall was packed with 200 people of all ages, who were treated to performances by the Zimmers and the Jewish Care choir. Participants were also offered various workshops. At the end of the day, a concert was held to celebrate all the choirs, which included a performance by Jonah and the Whalers, led by scriptwriter and TV producer Dan Patterson.


New chairman for British Friends of Boys Town Jerusalem

September 19, 2008

Lee Reuben is the new chairman of British Friends of Boys Town Jerusalem, succeeding Jeffrey Pinnick, who held the post for four years. Mr Reuben, a long-time supporter of the charity, is managing director of a marketing consultancy. He looked forward to helping Boys Town "turn young boys from limited backgrounds into young men with limitless futures".


Oxford's J-soc's annual pre-term party a success

September 19, 2008
Oxford and Oxford Brookes University Jewish Society members packed the Old Bull and Bush pub for the J-soc's annual "Oxford comes to London" pre-term party. They were welcomed by joint presidents Simon Gordon and Anna Harwood, who informed new students about Yom Kippur arrangements for freshers' week.


London memorial for IDF soldiers

By Jay Grenby, July 24, 2008

A Bnei Akiva-organised service in memory of Israeli soldiers Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser at Hampstead Garden Synagogue on Sunday was attended by over 500 people.

Board of Deputies president Henry Grunwald was among communal leaders and Israeli representatives at the service, arranged at short notice by BA's Eli Bauernfreund and Joshua Pomerance following the return of the soldiers' bodies to Israel from Lebanon as part of a prisoner-exchange deal.


A rocket from Sderot

By Alexandra Abrams, July 17, 2008

A group of 19- to 24-year-olds from Sderot brought an unusual gift to their South Hampstead Synagogue hosts — the shell of a Kassam rocket fired at their town in 2003.

The rocket shell, taken to London with Israeli government permission, was placed on the synagogue entrance table on Shabbat. “It stunned congregants to silence,” reported Alexandra Maurice, chair of the Hineni committee, under whose auspices the young Israelis visited. It was a “stark and real” reminder of the daily threat to Sderot residents.


Strong legal argument

July 10, 2008

Delivering the annual Isaiah Berlin Lecture at Hampstead Synagogue, Baroness Kennedy argued that while law and democracy are the pillars of British society, it is the law which is paramount.

The human-rights and civil-liberties specialist pointed out that there are currently 80 cases of alleged Islamic terrorism awaiting trial.

Trying to take short-cuts would only lead to unsafe convictions and thus should be avoided.

Although one impulse to the threat of terrorism was to withdraw the rights of some, judges should fight to maintain the human rights of everyone.


Second film festival for Tel Aviv University Trust

July 3, 2008
Tel Aviv University Trust, sponsored by Investec Private Bank, held its second Student Film Festival at the Everyman Cinema. Over 400 supporters viewed four award-winning short films made by students at the Yolanda and David Katz Arts Faculty at the university. The films’ subject matter — foreign workers, religious identity and Jewish-Arab relations — made for a lively audience question-and-answer session with two of the young directors, Aya Somech and Pini Tavger.