‘Game-changing’ Leeds eruv gets council go-ahead

Religious boundary set to be operational early in 2021


Leaders of the project to establish an eruv in North Leeds believe it could be up and running early next year following the granting of full planning permission from the city council.

The religious boundary — heralded as a “game-changer” for the community’s future — has been designed to cover the vast majority of the Leeds Jewish population.

Project chair Jonathan Straight said he had been working on the idea for more than a decade and had been fortunate to gain the support of the late Dayan Yehuda Refson.

“There was a perception that he would not agree to an eruv. But he had taught me in my youth at the Shomrei Hadass cheder and I was able to have a meaningful discussion with him. He was actually positive about an eruv but adamant that it would be designed to the highest halachic standard.”

Leeds City Council received 128 letters in support of the eruv from across the Jewish community and beyond — and just ten objections.

A handful of donors have funded the £35,000 cost of getting the eruv designed and the application through the planning process. The committee will now focus on raising the funds needed to complete the project, estimated at a further £125,000. The build time will be around three months.

“For Leeds, this is a complete game-changer,” Mr Straight added. “We now have the potential to become a viable and thriving location for young Orthodox families.

“This has been a long time coming and for me, something of a labour of love. It is now up to the community to support this initiative so that it can become a reality.”





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