It all started with an advertisement in the JC in 1917 requesting “gentlemen residing at Watford and Bushey who are desirous to attend services on the Jewish High Festivals to communicate with Mr F J Moss, 8 Ye Corner, Aldenham Road, Bushey”.
Now Watford Synagogue is marking the centenary of a Jewish presence in the town with a programme of events.
In the early years, the community was so small that in 1932, the half-a-dozen or so Jewish families celebrated the High Holy-Days at the home of a local dental surgeon.
But the outbreak of the Second World War brought an influx of 200 families, many moving from north-west London to avoid anticipated air raids.
The United Synagogue congregation moved into its current home in Nascot Road in 1993 and its 200-plus families are led by Rabbi Ephraim Levine and co-chairs Sara Garnelas and Brian Levy.
Claiming to be “one of the friendliest synagogues in Hertfordshire”, the community prides itself on its relaxed approach and warm welcome to visitors.
As well as weekly services, it hosts cubs, scouts and brownie packs, a popular cheder and a flourishing over-60s club.