York will hold first simcha since the 1970s

TOMORROW will see two firsts for the developing York Liberal Jewish Community.

Ester van der Bos, of Northumberland, will become the first child to be bnei mitzvah in York since the demise of the city's synagogue in the 1970s.

And there will be the consecration of York's first Jewish cemetery since, it is believed, medieval times.

Ester will read a passage from the community's Czech Torah scroll, which was rescued from the Holocaust and lent to the community by the Memorial Scrolls Trust.

The service will be conducted jointly by York's student rabbi for the year, Gabriel Webber, and Liberal Judaism's director of strategy and partnerships, Rabbi Charley Baginsky.

Rabbi Baginsky will perform a short ceremony to consecrate a plot of land in Fulford Cemetery, which is being set aside for Jewish burial.

The plot can accommodate around 100 graves.

There are now nearly 100 members of the community. A cheder opened in September.

The community's next ambition is to appoint a rabbi.

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