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Review will consider Board of Deputies’ ‘relevance’

A “serious self-evaluation” by the Board of Deputies will investigate whether the organisation is still relevant to Jewish life in Britain.

The review of the representative body of Anglo-Jewry was ordered by president Vivian Wineman and senior vice-president Laura Marks.

It will look at “issues relating to the future development, structure and direction” of the organisation, and is intended to consider the Board’s role following the emergence of groups such as the Jewish Leadership Council.

Staff members will be asked to give their views and leading management consultant Malcolm Wolf will report to a Board meeting in January.

Sources suggest that “heads may roll” after Mr Wolf’s findings, but it is more likely that staff will be reassigned.

Board president Vivian Wineman said the initiative would “bring us closer to our deputies and the communities they represent… The Board’s primary raison d’etre has always been to represent the diverse needs of our community and we are excited to be looking to the future to ensure we continue this vital task.”

Earlier this month, it was announced that the Board and the JLC were considering moving to joint premises in an effort to streamline the two organisations and save money.

Such a move would additionally allow for key staff to work more closely together.

The Board’s elections in May saw the promotion of dozens of younger deputies and new executive members. The Changing the Board group had lobbied for “revolution” and widespread changes to the way the organisation operated.

It is more than 15 years since the last such exercise took place.

More than 550 people attended the Board’s annual dinner in London last week.

The event, which raised more than £278,000, included an address by Prince Hassan of Jordan in which he spoke about the uncertainty in the Middle East and called for more progress on interfaith efforts.

Education Secretary Michael Gove and Israeli ambassador to the UK, Daniel Taub, also spoke.

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