A “one-stop shop” for Jewish Heritage in Britain, a very extensive web site and database with information, news, photographs, project and threat reports and other details of Jewish historic architecture, synagogues and cemeteries in the UK, including all Jewish sites listed as National Heritage sites . The Survey of the Jewish Built Heritage in the UK and Ireland, begun in 1997, has recorded more than 350 synagogues and Jewish sites that date from before World War II.
Dr. Sharman Kadish, Director Jewish Heritage UK Room 204, Ducie House 37, Ducie Street Manchester, M1 2JW United Kingdom Email: email@example.com
A comprehensive web site that is an initiative of the Spiro Ark http://www.spiroark.org/. Its goal is “to raise awareness of this rich, but often unknown, history among both Jews and non-Jews alike, and to encourage individuals to further investigate their own roots as well as the fascinating origins of the community.”
The site has links to Jewish heritage trails in nearly 20 localities, with more planned: London, Bath, Bradford, Brackley, Bright & Hove, Canterbury, Cheltenham, Bury St. Edmunds, Dover, Guildford, Hull, Leeds, Lincoln, Northampton, Oxford, Ramsgate, Sheerness & Blue Town, Stroud.
There are also links to many institutions and other resources.
Details of more that 1,200 present and former Jewish congregations across the British Isles, with searchable databases. Easily consulted list of Jewish Heritage sites in the British Isles, arranged geographically.
The site also includes a list of synagogues in the UK that were damaged or destroyed by German bombing in World War II
Searchable database of Jewish Cemeteries in the U.K. – history, maps, epitaphs, inscriptions, photographs, numerous resources. It has a blog with news and articles.
An article by Rabbi Bernard Susser, providing history and details of Jewish cemeteries in the counties of Cornwall, Devon, Avon and Gloucester, the earliest dating back to the second half of the 18th century.
Mainly oriented to genealogy, with a searchable database of Anglo-Jewish community records.
Links and information for heritage sites in London and around the UK can be found in the web sites listed above. Here below, we provide links to heritage sites that have their own web sites or other more extensive online information.
The page has many links, maps, articles about Jewish London.
Detailed site, with photos, descriptions, walking routes, etc., in East London’s historic Jewish district.
4 Heneage Lane London EC3A 5DQ (Entry on Bevis Marks) Tel: +44 (0) 20 7626 1274
Britain’s oldest standing synagogue, founded in 1701 and still in use by the Spanish and Portuguese congregation.
St. Petersburgh Place, Bayswater
London W2 4JT
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7229 2631
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org for visits: email@example.com
Grandly opulent synagogue, dedicated in 1880, designed by George Audsley and similar in design to the Princes Road synagogue in Liverpool which Audsley also designed. A Grade 1 Listed Building, it features magnificent stained glass windows designed and made by N. H. J. Westlake.
When it opened, the Jewish Chronicle described its opulence and eclectic architecture: “…Externally, the building is constructed of red brick, with the leading ornamental portions in red stone…the central gable rising to the height of about 77 feet is flanked by two square turrets 94 feet in height finished with open tabernacles and domes…In the central gable is placed a magnificent doorway deeply recessed and elaborately ornamented. The doors are of teak hung with bold wrought iron hinges…The seating, which affords accommodation for about 800 persons throughout, and the doors and gallery fronts are of polished pitch pine; the doors and panels of the gallery fronts display wood of remarkable richness and rarity. Probably no such wood is to be seen in any public building in London…“
The synagogue web site has extensive information on the architecture and history of the building, as well as a visitors’ guide and useful information for visitors and links to other articles and resources.
4a Sandys Row Spitalfields, London | E1 7HW
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7377 6196
London’s oldest Ashkenazi Synagogue, established in a converted French chapel in 1867-70, and the last fully functioning Jewish community in what was once the heart of the Jewish East End.
Hoop Lane, Golders Green London. NW11 7EU
Tel: +44 (0) 20 8455 2569
Founded in 1897 and the burial place of many notables.
REGIONS OF ENGLAND
Located on Bradford Road, Combe Down, it was founded in the 1830s; earliest gravestone dates from 1842, latest from 1921; the prayer house is listed as an English Heritage site.
Designed by local architect Thomas Lainson and opened in 1875, the synagogue is a Grade II* Listed Building for its extremely ornate interior decoration, which is officially described as “an extremely sumptuous example of late 19th century craftsmanship.“
The web site includes a history of the building, description of the interior and a photo gallery.
Built in 1763, it the third oldest in England. A major restoration of the building took place in 1998. An archived web site includes a detailed description of that restoration process, with drawings and comments.
Located on Magdalen Road on the edge of Bull Meadow. It was established in 1757. The earliest legible tombstone is from 1807.
The site includes links to other resources about the Jewish community
Historic cemetery opened in 1780 and closed around 1913. The web page, on the Cemetery Scribes web site, lists burials and has photos of many of the gravestones and epitaphs
Leicester LE3 9QG
Established in 1902, this is the only Orthodox Jewish cemetery serving Leicester and vicinity. There are about 900 burial plots. Thanks to volunteers, and supported by the National Lottery, the cemetery has been fully mapped and documented, with all headstones photograph — all can be accessed on the cemetery web site, which has a searchable database for gravestones.
Princes Road Liverpool L8 1TG Tel: +44 (0) 151 709 3431 Fax: +44 (0) 151 709 4187
Designed by two Christian architects, the brothers William James Audsley and George Ashdown Audsley, from Edinburgh, and built in 1874 to replace an earlier shul, this magnificent synagogue is one of Britain’s finest examples of Moorish-style architecture and is a Grade 1 listed building.
Greenbank Drive (former) synagogue
Red-brick, art deco synagogue designed by the noted Liverpool architect Sir Ernest Alfred Shennan and built in 1936/37. It served its congregation until January 2008, when dwindling numbers forced the community to move and close the building. A 2008 proposal to turn it into apartments was blocked — thanks to the efforts of the 20th Century Society, which got the building upgraded to Grade II heritage status — and the building has stood empty since then. In March 2013, it was reported that the synagogue was to receive £70,000 in rescue funding from English Heritage and the Liverpool city council the building, which has been on the “English Heritage at Risk” list since 2010, can be refurbished and its long-term future assured.
Founded in 1835 and the burial place of leading Jewish business, the cemetery lay derelict for most of the past century: its last recorded burial was in 1929. A fullscale restoration of the cemetery was completed in April 2012 thanks to a £494,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.
Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue (former)
190 Cheetham Hill Road
Manchester, M8 8LW
Tel: 0161 834 9879
Red-brick, Moorish-style building; designed by Edward Salomons and dedicated in 1875 for the Sephardic community. It closed for worship in 1981 and in 1984 opened at the seat of the Manchester Jewish Museum.
Former synagogue, Cheetham Hill Road.
Red-brick building designed by W. Sharp Ogden and built in 1889; it has a central arch framing a star of David. Long closed, it is now a clothing company.
The Jewish Centre 21 Richmond Road, Oxford OX1 2JL United Kingdom Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jews first arrived in Oxford from France in 1070s, but this medieval community was expelled from Oxford and England by King Edward 1 in 1290. Jews were not officially allowed back to England until 1655. The Oxford Jewish Heritage website focuses on the long-neglected history of the medieval community as well as the modern Jewish presence from the 19th century. Highlights include detailed maps of Medieval Jewish Oxford, an Inventory of Hebraica and Judaica in the Oxford Colleges, Blue commemorative plaques for famous Oxford Jews and more.
There is a Jewish section (with burials mainly from the 20th century) in the city’s Wolvercote cemetery. You can download a pdf list of burials here.
Grade 2 listed Georgian Jewish cemetery, dating from the mid-18th century. Surrounded by a high stone wall; includes about 50 gravestones and tahara house. Restoration work, funded by a grant from the national lottery, was carried out in the summer of 2015.
Catherine St., Plymouth PL1 2AD
Tel (mobile): +44 (0) 7753 267616
Built in 1762, the synagogue is the oldest Ashkenazi synagogue in the English-
speaking world. Here is a video made during the celebration of its 250th anniversary:
The Old Jewish Burial Ground at Plymouth Hoe (Lambhay Green)
Founded in the first half of the 18th century, it was long abandoned and overgrown behind its tall walls. “Rediscovery” and clean-up began in around 2015.
New Jewish Cemetery (established in 1868) is located at 49 Gifford Place, off Ford Park Road, Plymouth PL3 4JA
Built in 1928, the synagogue of The Sunderland Hebrew Congregation was designed by Marcus K. Glass in Byzantine/Art Nouveau style and utilizes red brick, turquoise mosaic and terracotta tiles. Its facade is dominated by a big arched window over a double-arched portal. It was altered with the insertion of a Bimah in 1968. Though listed as a Grade II historic building, the synagogue closed in 2006 and is in seriously decaying condition, having been sold by the Jewish community and with a row over its heritage status blocking either restoration or development.
Jewish Heritage UK writes:
Sunderland’s last remaining synagogue held its final service in 2006. Sold to Jewish developers, the building stood vacant for years in a town which was once a bastion of Jewish Orthodoxy. It was vandalised and the schoolhouse next door (Cyril Gillis 1936) was gutted by fire. Finally, in 2010 the synagogue was purchased by a neighbouring builder but no plans for redevelopment have yet been submitted. The unlisted sister Clapton Federation Synagogue in London, also by Glass, closed in May 2005 and was demolished by Jewish developers in July 2006.
Jewish life flourished in Winchester in Medieval times, from the mid-12th century until Kind Edward I ordered Jews expelled from England in 1290. Almost no physical traces of this medieval Jewish history remain, but a Medieval Jewish Trail was launched in 2015 to trace sites, history and heritage.