Sunderland Beth Hamedrash

Sunderland, Tyne & Wear



Page created: 10 February 2004
Latest update or revision: 16 June 2015

Congregation Data


Sunderland Beth Hamedrash

Previous Name:

Chevra Torah (from 1891 to 1899)

Latest Address:

Mowbray Road, Sunderland (from 1938)

Previous Addresses:

Moved to Zion Street shortly after formation.
1895 - Moved to Villiers Street North, Sunderland.
1899 - Moved to new premises in Villiers Street South, Sunderland.
1903 - New synagogue opened in Meaburn Street, Sunderland.
1938 - New synagogue opened on corner of Mowbray Road and The Oaks, Sunderland.

Date Formed:

In 1891, primarily by then recent immigrants, the majority of whom had come from Kretinga (Krottingen), in north-east Lithuania.

Current Status:

Closed December 1984 (incorporated with the Sunderland Hebrew Congregation).


Ashkenazi Orthodox (following Lithuanian tradition, and considered to be more observant than the Sunderland Hebrew Congregation)


Rabbi Shmaryahu Bloch from 1894 to 1902

Rabbi Hirsch Hurwitz from 1903 to 1910

Rev. Warrantz (acting minister) from 1910 to 1913

Rabbi David Rabbinowitz from 1913 to 1923

Rabbi Moishe Rabbinowitz from 1923 to 1946 (the son of Rabbi David Rabbinowitz)

Rabbi Abraham Babad from 1947 to 1965

Rabbi Shammai Zahn from 1965 to 1999 (From 1965 until 1981, Rabbi Zahn performed the duties of the minister of the Congregation, but was not formally appointed as its "Rabbi" until 1981. From 1984 until 1999, Rabbi Kahn was the minister of "Sunderland Hebrew Congregation, incorporating Sunderland Beth Hamedrash".)

JCR-UK is grateful to Derek Taylor & Harold Davis for the above list.




Numerous records of the Jewish Communities in Northeast England (only a sample of which are listed below) are deposited with the Tyne and Wear Archives Service (http://www.legacyarchives.org.uk).   CLICK HERE to view a full list of these records (correct to December 2005).


  • Marriages 1904-1984  - Tyne and Wear Archives Service (see above)

  • All marriage records now deposited with Office of Chief Rabbi

Synagogue Records:

  • Minutes 1899-1984 -  Tyne and Wear Archives Service (see above)


On-Line Articles

From Kretinga to Sunderland: a Jewish chain migration from Lithuania 1850-1930s, a 2002 paper by the late Gordon Leigh on the history and origins of this Congregation.

Other Congregation Information



  • The Sunderland Beth Hamedresh 1889-1999 - The Road to Gateshead by Derek Taylor & Harold Davis [Arima Publishing, 2010]


Sunderland Jewish Community home page

Jewish Congregations in Tyne and Wear

Jewish Communities of England home page

Explanations of Terms Used


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