4th September 2017 - Our roof project is drawing towards a successful conclusion. Today a few of us climbed to the top to reinstate the Magen Dovid and then the sun came out ....
On Wednesday, 25 January our members  contributed to Reading Council’s Holocaust Memorial Event organised by the Alliance for Cohesion and Racial Equality, and held in the Council Chamber at the Civic Offices in Reading. The keynote speaker Lord Alfred Dubs (pictured bottom right) was born in Prague, then in Czechoslovakia, Dubs was one of 669 Czech- resident, mainly Jewish, children saved by English stockbroker Nicholas Winton and others from the Nazis on the Kindertransport (Dubs' father was Jewish).
Chief Rabbi’s Visit

Chief Rabbi’s praise for

Reading Community in

13 July visit 

The Hermann Gollancz Hall was packed to capacity when nearly 100 members of Reading Hebrew Congregation welcomed what turned out to be a return visit by Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis. The evening was chaired by Reading's President.  She gave the Chief Rabbi Reading’s warmest welcome, and the Chief reciprocated in kind.  The Chief Rabbi spoke movingly and with great humour about some of the challenges facing small communities generally but with great optimism for the future.  He said that virtually all provincial communities were struggling, but it was clear to him from the numbers present, from the enthusiasm shown and from the clear commitment of so many members, that Reading was making the very best of things. The Chief Rabbi did not flinch from the problems that RHC had faced.  He said that he understood the difficult times that the Community had been through and congratulated the tenacious leadership of the President and the Board of Management in bringing the Community through it all.  The important thing, the Chief Rabbi concluded, was to look forward to new opportunities, rather than looking back at what had, or might have, been.   Smaller communities, such as Reading, should not dwell on what they no longer had or could no longer do.   They should instead focus on what they had got and what they could do, both now and in the future.  The Chief praised RHC as a model of that approach: by concentrating on what we could still achieve, RHC was ensuring that the flame of Judaism still burned brightly in Reading.

News

Reading Hebrew Congregation

 Reading Synagogue

  7, Goldsmid Road, Reading

 Berkshire, RG1 7YB, United Kingdom

 +44 (0)118 957 3954

Protecting Our Heritage Roof Repairs in Progress

Reading Synagogue has

been awarded a grant

worth nearly £117000 

to carry out much-

needed repairs to its roof and cupola

 

Reading Hebrew Congregation successfully applied for the grant through the Government-funded Listed Places of Worship: Roof Repair Fund. This grant will allow the Reading Hebrew Congregation to carry out much-needed restoration of its century old roof, which is adorned by an oriental cupola that has long been a feature of the local skyline. Reading Hebrew Congregation President, Mrs Sarah Firsht, said: This is a wonderful day in the history of our beloved Synagogue.  It has been the focal point of the Jewish Community in Reading for generations but our smaller numbers mean that members’ subscriptions can no longer provide the large sums necessary to repair our roof.  This grant is a lifeline for us, allowing our lovely Synagogue – the only purpose-built Orthodox Synagogue in Berkshire – to serve the generations still to come as beautifully as it has served those of the past. This grant money is part of a wider funding package of £22.9 million to 401 historic places of worship across the UK. Only one other synagogue (Liverpool) won a grant award.  Reading’s is in the top 5% of grants in terms of value. The fund was launched by the Chancellor in his Autumn Statement in December 2014 and the funding package has now seen a total of 903 places of worship across the UK receive a share of £55million.  Board member Mike Fuhr, who negotiated the grant, said: RHC has been extraordinarily lucky to win this award. We were just one of over 1500 grant applications which together were looking for nearly £90 million. Only £22.9 million was available, so you can see just how lucky we have been. RHC's basic grant will be £94,800 but the grant authority has agreed that we can benefit from a scheme that allows us to reclaim the VAT which we shall pay. So the total value of the grant will be just under £117,000. RHC will contribute some £15500 to a refurbishment project costing some £132,500. This will be enough to completely refurbish the Shul roof and our much-loved cupola, including the mogen dovid that has been missing for the last couple of years. Though hugely welcome, the grant will not directly improve our finances. We shall simply be reimbursed for the cost of the work that needs to be done. All being well, work could start next year. The Fund is administered by the National Heritage Memorial Fund  on behalf of the Department for Culture Media and Sport. A full list of awards across the UK can be found at www.lpowroof.org.uk
Chief Rabbi’s Visit Protecting Our Heritage Roof Repairs in Progress
Registered Charity No. 220098
Reading Hebrew Congregation
Heritage Open Days a Great Success
Over 80 visitors visited our Synagogue on Sunday 11th September as part of the Jewish Heritage Days and local Heritage Open Days.  A very successful 2 hours, lots of positive comments and feedback.
Holocaust Memorial Day
Synagogue Roof Restoration
16th May 2017 - Reading Hebrew Congregation ‘s Life President and President outside Reading Synagogue where major restoration work on its landmark roof began this week  mostly funded from a grant obtained through the Government-funded Listed Places of Worship: Roof Repair Fund (see below).  The community’s busy programme of services, social and cultural events, including the annual Shavuot Lunch will continue throughout the project, expected to last approximately 18 weeks. Inside, on the day this photo was taken, one of the Congregation’s regular Welcome Days for local schools was underway as usual.
Note: You may have seen news on the internet about the Synagogue in Reading, Pennsylvania, USA ‘closing it’s doors’ and selling it’s building. This is nothing to do with us. Our community is very much alive, active and welcoming new members, some of whom have recently joined us!

Events

As part of our   development plans we want to improve the provision for our youngest in the community.  We have several young children within the community as well as several children within families in the area who have links with our community. To this end we are introducing children’s services aimed at tots to under 8s. These services will last about 20 minutes followed a Kiddish. We'll have rhymes, songs and stories for Shabbat, led by members of the community. We'd like the little ones to be accompanied by an adult - parent, grandparent, friend of the family, etc. The first of these took place early September. We also ran a pre-event as-well. We had two different groups of children attend we’ve had some very good feedback from the kids and their mums aswell! We will be running children’s servicesover Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur and in November as well. If you would welcome the opportunity for you and your children to get to know other Jewish people in the area then this may well be an opportunity to do so. If you are interested, please contact us at info@rhc.org.uk for more details.  
Heritage Open Days - 2017
We are opened the Synagogue for visitors on Sunday 10th September between 11:00 and 14:00 as part of both the Reading Heritage Open Days and the the Jewish Heritage Days 2017.   Eighty or so people attended and we gave our visitors the opportunity to see inside the Synagogue and an insight to our history and our vision for the future.We had very good feedback from the event and look forward torunning this event again in the future.
Children’s Services
1st August 2017 - As anyone who has visited the Shul recently will have seen, work has now started in earnest on the roof. The scaffolding around the building is something of a work of art in itself and all the existing tiles have been stripped and most of the re-slating has been completed. However, the original estimate of cost was exceeded by the tenders we received. This was the result of sharply increased costs in the heritage construction industry caused partly by the general increase in economic activity and partly by the existence of the grant scheme itself.  We spent a lot of time negotiating with the Listed Places of Worship (LPOW) grant organisation to see if they could help us in any way. As a result of these discussions, LPOW have recognised the issues we face and we were delighted to receive an offer of additional grant worth some £18,000, leading to a total grant value of £132,000. This will significantly ease the pressure on the Community’s financial reserves.   
Synagogue Roof Restoration - Progress
Recent broadcast on Radio Berkshire As part of our initiatives with the wider Reading andBerkshire community we are regularly asked to contribute to programmes on Radio Berkshire. Click here to hear our latest contribution (1 hour 37 minutes into the broadcast).
Synagogue Roof Restoration - Nearly There
Rosh Hashana & Yom Kippur Services
We welcome Rabbi Mark Daniels who will be leading our Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur evening and morning services. These are open to all Jewish people in the area - Families with or without children (we will be running Children's services on all mornings), Singles, and Students living in Reading, Berkshire and surrounding areas. Please email us at info@rhc.org.uk  for our timecard.
4th September 2017  - Our roof project  is drawing towards a successful conclusion. Today a few  of us climbed to the top to reinstate the Magen Dovid and then the sun came out ....
On Wednesday, 25 January our members contributed to Reading Council’s Holocaust Memorial Event organised by the Alliance for Cohesion and Racial Equality, and held in the Council Chamber at the Civic Offices in Reading. The keynote speaker Lord Alfred Dubs (pictured bottom right) was born in Prague, then in Czechoslovakia, Dubs was one of 669 Czech- resident, mainly Jewish, children saved by English stockbroker Nicholas Winton and others from the Nazis on the Kindertransport (Dubs' father was Jewish).
Chief Rabbi’s Visit

Chief Rabbi’s praise for Reading

Community in 13 July visit 

The Hermann Gollancz Hall was packed to capacity when nearly 100 members of Reading Hebrew Congregation welcomed what turned out to be a return visit by Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis. The evening was chaired by Reading's President.  She gave the Chief Rabbi Reading’s warmest welcome, and the Chief reciprocated in kind.  The Chief Rabbi spoke movingly and with great humour about some of the challenges facing small communities generally but with great optimism for the future.  He said that virtually all provincial communities were struggling, but it was clear to him from the numbers present, from the enthusiasm shown and from the clear commitment of so many members, that Reading was making the very best of things. The Chief Rabbi did not flinch from the problems that RHC had faced.  He said that he understood the difficult times that the Community had been through and congratulated the tenacious leadership of the President and the Board of Management in bringing the Community through it all.  The important thing, the Chief Rabbi concluded, was to look forward to new opportunities, rather than looking back at what had, or might have, been.   Smaller communities, such as Reading, should not dwell on what they no longer had or could no longer do.   They should instead focus on what they had got and what they could do, both now and in the future.  The Chief praised RHC as a model of that approach: by concentrating on what we could still achieve, RHC was ensuring that the flame of Judaism still burned brightly in Reading.
News

Reading Hebrew Congregation

 Reading Synagogue

  7, Goldsmid Road, Reading

 Berkshire, RG1 7YB, United Kingdom

 +44 (0)118 957 3954

Reading

Synagogue has

been awarded a

grant worth

nearly £117000  to carry out

much-needed repairs to its

roof and cupola

 

Reading Hebrew Congregation successfully applied for the grant through the Government- funded Listed Places of Worship: Roof Repair Fund. This grant will allow the Reading Hebrew Congregation to carry out much-needed restoration of its century old roof, which is adorned by an oriental cupola that has long been a feature of the local skyline. Reading Hebrew Congregation President, Mrs Sarah Firsht, said: This is a wonderful day in the history of our beloved Synagogue.  It has been the focal point of the Jewish Community in Reading for generations but our smaller numbers mean that members’ subscriptions can no longer provide the large sums necessary to repair our roof.  This grant is a lifeline for us, allowing our lovely Synagogue – the only purpose-built Orthodox Synagogue in Berkshire – to serve the generations still to come as beautifully as it has served those of the past. This grant money is part of a wider funding package of £22.9 million to 401 historic places of worship across the UK. Only one other synagogue (Liverpool) won a grant award.  Reading’s is in the top 5% of grants in terms of value. The fund was launched by the Chancellor in his Autumn Statement in December 2014 and the funding package has now seen a total of 903 places of worship across the UK receive a share of £55million.  Board member Mike Fuhr, who negotiated the grant, said: RHC has been extraordinarily lucky to win this award. We were just one of over 1500 grant applications which together were looking for nearly £90 million. Only £22.9 million was available, so you can see just how lucky we have been. RHC's basic grant will be £94,800 but the grant authority has agreed that we can benefit from a scheme that allows us to reclaim the VAT which we shall pay. So the total value of the grant will be just under £117,000. RHC will contribute some £15500 to a refurbishment project costing some £132,500. This will be enough to completely refurbish the Shul roof and our much-loved cupola, including the mogen dovid that has been missing for the last couple of years. Though hugely welcome, the grant will not directly improve our finances. We shall simply be reimbursed for the cost of the work that needs to be done. All being well, work could start next year. The Fund is administered by the National Heritage Memorial Fund  on behalf of the Department for Culture Media and Sport. A full list of awards across the UK can be found at www.lpowroof.org.uk
Chief Rabbi’s Visit
Registered Charity No. 220098
Reading Hebrew Congregation
Heritage Open Days a Great Success
Over 80 visitors visited  our Synag- ogue on Sunday 11th September as part of the Jewish Heritage Days and local Heritage Open Days.  A very successful 2 hours, lots of positive comments and feedback.
Holocaust Memorial Day
Synagogue Roof Restoration
 16th May 2017 - Reading Hebrew Congregation ‘s Life President and President outside Reading Synagogue where major restoration work on its landmark roof began this week  mostly funded from a grant obtained through the Government-funded Listed Places of Worship: Roof Repair Fund (see below). The community’s busy programme of services, social and cultural events, including the annual Shavuot Lunch will continue throughout the project, expected to last approximately 18 weeks. Inside, on the day this photo was taken, one of the Congregation’s regular Welcome Days for local schools was underway as usual.
Note: You may have seen news on the internet about the Synagogue in Reading, Pennsylvania, USA ‘closing it’s doors’ and selling it’s building. This is nothing to do with us. Our community is very much alive, active and welcoming new members, some of whom have recently joined us!
 As part of our   development plans we want to improve the provision for our youngest in the community.  We have several young children within the community as well as several children within families in the area who have links with our community. To this end we are introducing children’s services aimed at tots to under 8s. These services will last about 20 minutes followed a Kiddish. We'll have rhymes, songs and stories for Shabbat, led by members of the community. We'd like the little ones to be accompanied by an adult - parent, grandparent, friend of the family, etc. The first of these took place early September. We also ran a pre-event as-well. We had two different groups of children attend we’ve had some very good feedback from the kids and their mums aswell! We will be running children’s services over Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur and in November as well. If you would welcome the opportunity for you and your children to get to know other Jewish people in the area then this may well be an opportunity to do so.  If you are interested, please contact us at info@rhc.org.uk for more details.

Events

Children’s Services
Heritage Open Days - 2017
We are opened the Synagogue for visitors on Sunday 10th September between 11:00 and 14:00 as part of both the Reading Heritage Open Days and the the Jewish Heritage Days 2017.
 Eighty or so people attended and we gave our visitors the opportunity to see inside the Synagogue and an insight to our history and our vision for the future.We had very good feedback from the event and look forward torunning this event again in the future.
Synagogue Roof Restoration - Progress
 1st August 2017 - As anyone who has visited the Shul recently will have seen, work has now started in earnest on the roof. The scaffolding around the building is something of a work of art in itself and all the existing tiles have been stripped and most of the re-slating has been completed. However, the original estimate of cost was exceeded by the tenders we received. This was the result of sharply increased costs in the heritage construction industry caused partly by the general increase in economic activity and partly by the existence of the grant scheme itself.  We spent a lot of time negotiating with the Listed Places of Worship (LPOW) grant organisation to see if they could help us in any way. As a result of these discussions, LPOW have recognised the issues we face and we were delighted to receive an offer of additional grant worth some £18,000, leading to a total grant value of £132,000. This will significantly ease the pressure on the Community’s financial reserves.
Synagogue Roof Restoration - Nearly There
Rosh Hashana & Yom Kippur Services
Recent broadcast on Radio Berkshire As part of our initiatives with the wider Reading and Berkshire community we are regularly asked to contribute to programmes on Radio Berkshire. Click here to hear our latest contribution (1 hour 37 minutes into the broadcast).
We welcome Rabbi Mark Daniels who will be leading our Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur evening and morning services. These are open to all Jewish people in the area - Families with or without children (we will be running Children's services on all mornings), Singles, and Students living in Reading, Berkshire and surrounding areas. Please email us at info@rhc.org.uk  for our timecard.