Golders Green care home sale to Charedi shul brings windfalls for 11 charities

Site of Clara Nehab House will be taken over by Tiferes Yisroel congregation. Welfare groups will benefit from sale proceeds


A growing Charedi congregation in Golders Green is purchasing the premises of former local care home Clara Nehab House, which closed last year. And the proceeds will bring windfalls for Jewish charities when the assets of the Leo Baeck Housing Association, which owned Clara Nehab House, are redistributed.

Tiferes Yisroel wants the Leeside Crescent site of four connected houses as a permanent home, having outgrown its rented accommodation nearby.

The intention is to use the ground floor for services and educational activities and for the top floor to be used for assisted living for special needs charity Kisharon. Part of the site will also be converted into a home for the congregation’s full-time minister, Rabbi Yosef Weinberg.

Daniel Klein, chair of the Tiferes Yisroel building committee, said the hope was to submit a planning application to Barnet Council by the end of the year and to move in after renovation work sometime in 2021. “It’s a run down building and we want to create something more modern,” he told the JC.

Mr Klein explained that the congregation was established some six years ago and had grown steadily to 75 families across the age spectrum, with a number of businessmen among its ranks.

Finding suitable premises in the Golders Green area had proved difficult and the Clara Nehab site was “manna from heaven”. Keeping a communal building in Jewish use had been a “motivational factor. And it is wonderful that we can include Kisharon. It ticked all the boxes.”

The rental income from Kisharon would be important to the financial viability of the project, Mr Klein added.

It had been backed by 4,500 donors, with a crowdfunding campaign generating £1.25 million. “We are incredibly grateful for the support we have had from all over the world.”

The Leo Baeck Housing Association took the decision to close Clara Nehab House “with a heavy heart” in the light of the investment which would have been required to meet updated fire and health and safety regulations. The home was also considered unsuitable for today’s complex care needs.

Many of the residents moved on to Jewish Care accommodation and the majority of staff also accepted jobs with Jewish Care.

LBHA chief executive Leon Smith said the proceeds from the sale, plus other cash held by the association, would be distributed over the next few months to charities operating in line with its objective “to provide housing for Jewish people”.

Organisations considered suitable by the association were invited to apply for support for a specific capital project. Eleven will be receiving funding — Jewish Care, Nightingale Hammerson, Norwood, Kisharon, Langdon, Jami, Jewish Blind and Disabled, jLiving, The Fed in Manchester, Leeds Jewish Housing Association and Sunridge Court.

Although the amounts awarded are not being disclosed, the largest disbursement will be a seven-figure sum.

“The important thing was that there would be name recognition because the money [accrued by the association] had been accumulated by German Jewish refugees who came here in the 1930s,” Mr Smith explained. “They were an amazing group of people who flourished in life.”

There will be plaques at some of the chosen projects and Jewish Care will be naming a floor in one of its buildings after Clara Nehab. Archive material has been transferred to the Wiener Library.

Mr Smith added that there had been a great deal of interest in the Clara Nehab premises and he was pleased at the outcome. “On the one hand, the community is benefiting from the sale. On the other, it is great that a communal group is taking it over.”


Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive