Birmingham & District Jewish Community
City of Birmingham
Birmingham, in the English Midlands, is the second largest city in England, with a population of approximately one million. In the vicinity of Birmingham are a number of towns whose Jewish communities have looked to the Birmingham community for support or shares facilities, including Walsall immediately to Birmingham's northwest and Solihull immediately to Birmingham's southeast.
Until 1974, Birmingham, Solihull and Walsall were county boroughs,
the first two in the county of Warwickshire and Walsall in the county of
Staffordshire. Each then became metropolitan boroughs within the newly created metropolitan county
of West Midlands (the areas of Solihull and Walsall being increased at the time by the incorporation
of adjoining areas). These
metropolitan boroughs became unitary authorities in 1986, when
lost its administrative county status, becoming purely a ceremonial and
geographical county. Solihull had been an urban district until 1964, when
it received county borough status.
The Birmingham Jewish Community
not develop as a major centre until relatively modern time and, accordingly,
there was no medieval Jewish community in Birmingham. There was, however, a
medieval Jewish community in Warwick, (34 miles away) and
in Coventry (23 miles away). The modern Jewish community dates from the
eighteen century, the earliest records of a synagogue and a Jewish burial ground
being about 1730.
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