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Page created by David Shulman: 29 July 2006
Redesigned by Louise Messik: 11 November 2011
Latest revision or update: 17 April 2015


The Channel Islands

The Channel Islands are a group of islands in the English Channel, off the coast of Normandy, France. They comprise two separate political entities, the Bailiwick of Guernsey (which also includes a number of smaller islands) and the Bailiwick of Jersey.  Although they are not technically part of the United Kingdom (they do not send representatives to the Parliament in Westminster), they are British crown dependencies.

The Jewish Community

It is most probable that there were Jews in the Channel Islands in the Medieval period, in light of their proximity to the French mainland and that fact the islands formed part of the Duchy of Normandy, which had a significant Jewish population, particularly in the city of Rouen (from where the medieval Jewish community in England is believed to have originated). However, no evidence remains of the medieval medieval Jewish presence on the islands.

The Channel Islands were the only British territory occupied by Nazi Germany during the Second World War, and the few Jews that remained behind during the occupation, suffered the same fate as their co-religionists on the European continent.

Although there is a small number of Jewish families on the island of Guernsey, the only organised Jewish congregations have been exclusively on the island of Jersey. 

Search the All-UK Database

The records in the database associated with the Channel Islands include:

Burials (Jersey)

Almorah Cemetery, 1877-1917 (11 records);
Tower Road Cemetery, 1982-2008 (53 burial records);
Tower Road Cemetery, 1942/3 (6 plaques to Jersey or Guernsey Jews who perished in Nazi death camps);
Westmont/Strangers Cemetery, 1852-2008 (64 records).

1851 Anglo Jewry Database

Individuals in the 1851 Anglo Jewry Database who were living in Jersey or Guernsey during the 1790s (2 records), 1800s (1 record), 1820s (3 records), 1830s (9 records), 1840s (35 records), 1850s (57 records), 1860s (14 records), 1870s (14 records), 1880s (8 records), 1890s (5 records) and 1900s (2 records).

The Jersey Jewish Congregations

The following are only Jewish congregation known to have existed on the island of Jersey:

After the synagogue of the above congregation fell into disuse, those Jewish families remaining on the island lived openly as Jews and continued to hold religious services in private homes. Subsequently the following congregation was established:

Articles relating to the Channel Islands Jewish Community

The Rise of Provincial Jewry - Channel Islands by Cecil Roth, 1950. Available on JCR-UK as part of the Susser Archive.

Press Reports relating to the Jersey Jewish community 1843 to 1936, compiled by Harold Pollins

Press Reports relating to the Jersey Jewish community from 1961, compiled by Harold Pollins


Photographs associated with the Channel Islands Jewish Community

Photographs of the Tower Road Cemetery, Jersey (for individual gravestones, please search the All-UK Database)


Jewish Population Data (Jersey)

1847 -  42 (Roth - The Rise of Provincial Jewry)
1965 -  60 (Jewish Year Book 1966)
1990 - 150 (Jewish Year Book 1991)
2004 - 120 (Jewish Year Book 2005)

Jewish Population Data (Guernsey)

1990 - 9 families (Jewish Year Book 1991)
2004 - 7 families (Jewish Year Book 2005)

Other Channel Islands Jewish Information

Bibliography and Other Sources

 IAJGS Cemetery Project - Jersey Cemetery Information

Explanations of Terms Used




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