Bristol Hebrew Congregation





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The Synagogue at 9 Park Row, Bristol (2001)

 The Holy Ark with the Torah Scrolls

Congregation Data


Bristol Hebrew Congregation


Synagogue at 9 Park Row, Bristol BS1 5LP (from 1871)
For full details of this and earlier synagogue buildings see Synagogue Buildings

Current Status:


Date Founded:

At least by 1756


Orthodox - Ashkenazi


A provincial synagogue under the aegis of the Chief Rabbi.




See List of Ministers of the Synagogue from 1762 to 2016


See List of Officers of the Synagogue from 1824 to 2002.

Secessionist Congregations:

From 1825 to 1835, a breakaway congregation was formed, meeting in a court just south of Counterslip, halfway between Temple Street and Temple Back, the congregations being re-united in 1835.

From 1893 to 1896, the Bridge Street Hebrew Congregation existed until the two congregations were re-united.

Membership Data:

1845  -  36 ba'alai batim and 40 seatholders (Chief Rabbi's Questionnaire)

1852  -  64 seatholders (Board of Deputies return)

1860  -  54 seatholders (Board of Deputies return)

1870  -  41 seatholders (Board of Deputies return)

1880  -  40 seatholders (Board of Deputies return)

1890  -  50 seatholders (Board of Deputies return)

1900  -  70 seatholders (Board of Deputies return); 72 seatholders (Jewish Year Book 1900/01)

1915  -  100 seatholders (Jewish Year Book 1916)

1919  -  120 seatholders (Jewish Year Book 1920)

1999  -  70 seatholders (Board of Deputies return)

2010 and 2016  -  listed as having 50 - 99 members (by household) (Reports on "Synagogue Membership in the United Kingdom in 2010" and "in 2016", respectively, published by BOD and JPR)

See also Synagogue Membership Lists

Charitable Status:

The congregation is a registered charity (registered charity no. 1165722), the governing document being a CIO - Association, registered 24 February 2016.
There appears to be an early registration (registered charity no. 1139964), registered on 20 January 2011.

Marriage Certification:

Worship Number: 20447  -  Registration District: Bristol - register office website.


Search the All-UK Database

The records in the database associated with Bristol Hebrew Congregation include:


1834 - 1990 (307 records).


Search the JCR-UK Bristol Databases

Bristol Jewish Cemeteries  - Records of burials, plus photographs of the headstones and copies of the burial certificates, where available, in the Bristol's St Phillips and Ridgeway Jewish Cemeteries (including re-internments from the Great Gardens, Rose Street Cemetery), from 1762 to 2003/

Congregation's Birth and Death Register (1829-1893) - Records of all entries in the Bristol Hebrew Congregation Birth and Death Register from 1829 to 1893, including, in each case, a scanned copy of the corresponding page of the Register.


Articles published by the Congregation

  • The Jews of Bristol by Alex Schlesinger (pdf - 1.2mb) - A summary of the Community's history, as published in a fund-raising brochure the Congregation from the 1970s.

  • Victorian Jewry in Bristol by Alex Schlesinger (pdf - 2.3mb) - A more detailed summary of the Community's history during the Victorian era, as published in a fund-raising brochure the Congregation from the 1970s. A non-pdf version of this article can be viewed as part of Bristol from "Provincial Jewry in Victorian Britain", material prepared by Aubrey Newman for the Conference on Provincial Jewry in Victorian Britain, - 6th July 1975.

Photographs and Drawings

  • Synagogue Buildings, a description of the synagogue buildings, past and present, including:

    • Drawings of the Stone Kitchen, the building used as a Synagogue from 1756 to 1786 (reproduced from the Braikenridge collection by kind permission of the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery); and

    • Photographs of the current Synagogue exterior and interior, including memorial plaques on the Eastern Wall and memorial plates on stained glass windows.

Other Congregation Documents & Lists Available

  • Synagogue Membership - Lists of Members of the Bristol Hebrew Congregation making donations for the years 1910, 1911, 1912, 1937, 1947, 1950, 1953, 1955 and 1959.

  • Constitution of the Congregation - Copies of the Constitution of the Congregation for 1842, 1872, 1898, 1966 and 1990.

  • Fund-Raising Brochures - Fund-raising brochures for the Synagogue and other Bristol Jewish communal purposes from 1905, 1925, 1927, 1934 to 1938, 1975 to 1979.

  • General Meeting Minutes - Scanned copies of all the pages from the Congregation's minute book for the period from 1901 to 1971.

  • Insurance Policies - Extracts from insurance policies for the synagogue buildings for 1838, 1842, 1844, 1845, 1847, 1852 and 1855.

  • Ladies Benevolent Society - Copies of the Annual Reports of Bristol Hebrew Ladies Benevolent Society for 1926 to 1941 (except 1927 and 1929).

  • Literary and Dramatic Societies - Copies of the programmes for productions by the Bristol Jewish Literary and Dramatic Societies in 1925, 1934, 1935 and 1936.

  • Newsletter - Copies of the Congregation's monthly newsletter (The Recorder) for 1946 and for most years from 1956 to 1990.

  • Synagogue Order of Service - Copies of pamphlets containing the Order of Service for various special occasions (for example, consecrations of synagogue buildings, coronations and royal jubilees, induction of ministers, etc.) in 1786, 1842, 1871, 1887, 1897, 1902, 1942, 1945, 1951, 1953, 1961, 1969, 1971, 1981, 1986 and 1994.

  • Bristol Hebrew Congregation Gabbai Book (on JGSGB website) - with an introduction, a full digital copy (110 pages) and a Youtube video. The full transcription of the Gabbai Book, estimated to have commenced prior to 1854, and information about Prominent Members of the Bristol Hebrew Community can be viewed in the Members Area of the JGSGB website (open only to members of JGSGB). The transcription will in due course be transferred to the JCR-UK website for open viewing.

Bristol Jewish Community home page
which includes additional information and other articles relating to this congregations

Jewish Communities of England home page

Page created prior to 31 December 2002
Page significantly redesigned: 20 October 2014
Latest revision or update: 15 January 201

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