Page created: 12 October 2006
Latest revision or update: 12 April 2013
Press Reports relating to the Burnley Synagogue
and Jewish Community
Compiled by Harold
Jewish Chronicle, 12 October 1894, page 17
During the Holy days services were held in Burnley for the first time, a
suitable room, specially fitted up as a synagogue, having been lent for the
occasion by Mr. N.S. Bernstein, dentist. Mr. Ginsberg read both services on the
New Year, and all the Day of Atonement services except Mincha. During the past
twelve months the number of Jewish families in Burnley has been considerably
augmented, and it is hoped shortly to establish there a regular congregation.
Jewish Chronicle, 6 September 1895, page 15
On the 25th ult., the Jewish inhabitants of Burnley and
district consecrated their new synagogue. At last year’s High Festivals they had
a Minyan for the first time, and have since then formed themselves into a
congregation, of which Mr. E. Denby is President, Mr. S. Shabbatt, of Nelson,
Vice-President and Treasurer, and Mr. M. Zacharias, Acting Hon. Secretary. Mr. Shabbatt
drew the plans for the interior fittings and decorations, had all the work
carried out under his personal supervision, and found the balance required to
meet the expenses. He also bought a new Sepher Torah, at his own expense, for
the occasion. The interior of the synagogue is handsomely decorated. Mr. T.
Goldstein presented the curtains for the Ark, one of magnificent tapestry and
the other white, Mr. Williams, cover for reading-desk, Mr. N.S. Goldstein,
clock, Mr. M. Zacharias, Ark, Mrs. Shabbatt, decoration for the windows. Mr. Rosenson,
of Blackburn, who was one of the invited guests, acted as Reader on the occasion
and impressively conducted the service. Mr. and Mrs. Shabbatt invited about
sixty ladies and gentlemen, Jews and Christians, to a repast, and an enjoyable
evening was spent. Mr. S. Saks, of Blackburn, proposed the health of the Queen,
which was heartily honoured, as was also the health of the Host and Hostess. - A
Christian who was present at the synagogue wrote to the Burnley Express:
“The opening of the synagogue in Burnley on Sunday last was quite an unusual
event, and I, as an Englishman, was alive to the privilege of attending for once
the ceremonial of the ancient religion. As a mere observer I was much impressed
by the way in which everything was done in due and ancient form. The unrolling
of the Scripture Parchment, the Ark and Covenant and all the rapt attention of
the worshippers was quite a revelation. I am not able to describe all the
various furnishings, but from what I saw I could leap back better the days of
King Solomon’s Temple, and could realise better than ever I had done before the
magnificence of that building. I was received with all courtesy and afterwards I
left with a feeling of respect for the Jewish religion and people”.
Jewish Chronicle, 2 April 1909, page 36
‘SHOCHET and TEACHER wanted; young man preferred; wage £1 per week; small
Jewish community. Apply Blackston, 110 Colne-road, Burnley, Lancs.’
Jewish Chronicle, 28 July 1911, page 2
'BURNLEY HEBREW CONGREGATION - WANTED, Shochet-Teacher,
combined, for small congregation; salary 25/- weekly and house. State age, &c.,
by letter to A. Cowen, 130, St. James‘-street, Burnley’.
Jewish Chronicle, 13 October 1911, page 2
‘BURNLEY HEBREW CONGREGATION - WANTED, Shochet (Teacher
combines) for small congregation; able to translate Hebrew into English;
married, small family preferred; wages 25/- weekly, rent free. Apply Cowen, 130
Jewish Chronicle, 2 February 1912, page 22
‘Burnley. At a domestic gathering held recently the Rev. A. Krant urged
the formation of a Hebrew and Jewish History Class for the members of the
congregation. The suggestion was supported by all present’.
26 July 1912, page 22
‘Burnley. The annual meeting of the congregation was held last Sunday.
The balance-sheet showed a satisfactory state of affairs. The following were
elected: Messrs. S. Blackstone, president; Fine, vice-president; I. Franks, hon.
Secretary; A. Lever, treasurer; and a committee of five’.
10 July 1931, page 16
‘Manchester Joint Education Board. - In reporting on
the Bolton and Burnley Congregations, the Rev. I.W. Slotki said that for many
years Burnley had carried on an uphill struggle. It had been difficult to get a
teacher for the small remuneration they could offer and they had suffered
through frequent changes of teachers, the children often being compelled to
remain for various periods without any Hebrew instruction. Bolton had been faced
with the necessity of reducing the salary of the Shochet. It was pleasing
to report that, thanks to the efforts of the Board, the two Congregations had
combined and that the Central Committee had consented to raise a grant’.
25 September 1931, page 10
‘Manchester Joint Jewish Education Board. - Mr. S.
Isaacson, president of the Bolton Congregation, expressed thanks to the Area
Committee for its successful efforts in connection with the scheme of
co-operation between the Bolton and Burnley Hebrew Congregations’.
Jewish Chronicle, 25 December 1931, page 23
‘Manchester Joint Jewish Education Board. - The Rev.
I.W. Slotki, M.A., said that the scheme of co-operation between the Bolton and
Burnley Congregations in connection with a sharing of the services of a
Shochet Teacher had ceased owing to migrations from Burnley and the
reduction of the number of pupils to teach’.
Jewish Chronicle, 28 June 1931, page III
From: ‘A Lancashire Journey By a Special Correspondent’
‘Across in East Lancashire stands Burnley,
in the foothills of the Pennine Range. From the top of a hilly street I saw the
gaunt ridge of these mountains, under a lowering sky, and felt the chill blast
of an east wind bringing rain and squalls in its train. It was unpropitious.
After a long uphill toil through narrow streets I found the address of the hon.
Secretary. He no longer lived there, and a typical Lancashire lass, who answered
my inquiry replied, “Oh, he’s flit!” (to Leeds, she thought). That really sunned
up Burnley Jewry - they have “flit,” through bad trade mainly. Even Jewish names
on shop fronts are no guide these days, for the owners (as in, to take at
random, Lancaster, Warrington, Oldham, Bury) may have their businesses situated
there, but require for the preservation of their Jewish consciousness to live
in the larger Jewish aggregations. Only four Jewish families remain in Burnley
-the Synagogue was closed eight or nine years ago’.
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