West Hartlepool Hebrew Congregation

& Hartlepool Jewish Community

Hartlepool, County Durham



Page created: 3 October 2005
Latest update or revision: 9 January 2015

Town of Hartlepool

The county borough of Hartlepool, in the North East of England, has a population of about 88,000 and, since 1996, has been unitary authority.  Prior to then, Hartlepool was a district of the now defunct metropolitan county of Cleveland, which had been formed in 1974. After the abolition of Cleveland in 1996, Hartlepool was placed back for ceremonial purposes in County Durham.  Until 1974, Hartlepool (covering an area somewhat smaller than the present borough) had been a county borough in  County Durham, and was formed in 1967 by the merger of the county borough of West Hartlepool with its smaller, but older, neighbour, the municipal borough of (old) Hartlepool.    Hartlepool, a port on the North Sea, is on the north side of the river Tees estuary. 

(West) Hartlepool Jewish Community

The Jewish community in West Hartlepool dates from about 1851. In the 1860's a congregation was established and during the 1870's the community built a synagogue and a Jewish cemetery was acquired. The congregation was never particularly large (no more than 80-90 individuals at its height in mid-twentieth century) and dwindled to little more than a dozen in the 1960's, at which time the synagogue was closed.

Search the All-UK Database

The records in the database associated with Hartlepool include:


Hartlepool Cemetery, 1876-2001 (118 records*)
*A search in the database may also reveal duplicates of these records on the JewishGen Online Worldwide Burial Register (JOWBR).

1851 Anglo Jewry Database

Individuals in the 1851 Anglo Jewry Database who were living in Hartlepool during the 1850s (4 records), 1860s (2 records), 1870s (3 records), 1880s (1 record) and 1900s (2 records).


Congregation Data

Only one Jewish congregation, the West Hartlepool Hebrew Congregation, is known to have existed in West Hartlepool.

Official Name:

West Hartlepool Hebrew Congregation


The synagogue was in Whitby Street, West Hartlepool, purpose-built in 1872 (consecrated on 5 November 1872 - press report).

(Previously the synagogue was a room in Brunswick Street, West Hartlepool.))

Date Formed:

The congregation dates from about 1863 (per press report)

Current Status:

Closed - 1967 (Remaining members join Middlesbrough Hebrew Congregation)
Synagogue demolished in early 1970's.


Ashkenazi Orthodox


Became affiliated to Leeds United Hebrew Congregation for the purposes of burial rights.

Membership Data:

1896 -  13 seatholders (source)

1900 -  12 seatholders (source)


Worship Number: 20774;
Duplicate Marriage Records held by The Board of Deputies: Archives Ref: 6/2a/1 6/2a/2

Registration Districts:

9 June 1859 - Hartlepool
1 July 1938 - West Hartlepool
1 April 1967 - Hartlepool
1 April 1974 - North Cleveland
1 April 1996 - Hartlepool (which would now hold the records)


The Jewish cemetery is at Old Cemetery Road, Hartlepool.

In 1864, the local council approved an application from the Jewish community for the establishment of a Jewish cemetery (see press report), although, primarily as a result of lack of funds, the cemetery was not completed until 1874 (see press report).

Until 1885, the Cemetery was also used by the Middlesbrough Jewish Community.

The All-UK Database (above) includes 118 records of interments at the Cemetery (1876 to 2001).

See also IAJGS Cemeteries Project - West Hartlepool Cemetery

On-Line Articless

Press Report of the First Jewish Marriage in Hartlepool, Stockton & Hartlepool Mercury, 28 February 1865

Other Press Reports relating to the Hartlepool Jewish Community 1858 to 1929

Jewish Population Data
(West Hartlepool)










- 20 families (Jewish Chronicle report 16 August 1870)

- 35 families (Letter to Jewish Chronicle 15 March 1872)

- 50 (The Jewish Year Book 1896-97)

- 20* (The Jewish Year Book 1900-01)

- 60 (The Jewish Year Book 1935)

- 85 (The Jewish Year Book 1946)

- 80 (The Jewish Year Book 1952)

- 30 (The Jewish Year Book 1966)

- 15 (The Jewish Year Book 1971)

* Based upon research by Harold Pollins, in particular with reference to the 1901 Census for West Hartlepool and the Jewish Chronicle, it would appear that the above population figure for 1900 is substantially below the actual figure. Mr. Pollins identified 14 Jewish families and a single man in 1901, two of which consisted of 12 family members each, one of 9 family members, one of 8, two of 7, and four families of 5.  In total, they accounted for 89 individuals.  Furthermore, as at least eight of the families were present in the 1891 census, the increase in numbers could not have been the result of a sudden influx of Jews into the town.

Other Hartlepool Jewish Information


Jewish Congregations in County Durham

Jewish Communities of England home page

Explanations of Terms Used




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