Heaton Park Hebrew Congregation

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Heaton Park Hebrew Congregation
Basic information
Location Middleton Road, Crumpsall,
North Manchester, United Kingdom
Affiliation Orthodox Judaism
Status Active
Leadership Rabbi Daniel Walker
Architectural description
Completed 1937
Materials Red brick

Heaton Park Hebrew Congregation is a large Ashkenazi Orthodox synagogue located in North Manchester, United Kingdom.[1] It was founded in 1935, and in 2010 had between 500 and 749 members.[2] Under the aegis of the Chief Rabbi of the United Kingdom,[3] Reverend Leslie Olsberg MBE led the congregation for 35 years until his death in 2008.[4][5][6] Rabbi Daniel Walker succeeded him, and currently heads the congregation.[7] Yehuda Marks is the hazzan.


The Heaton Park Hebrew Congregation was formally founded in 1935. By 1999, it had a membership of 550.[1] Reverend Leslie Olsberg retired from his position in 2008, aged 86, after 35 years' service.[4] The congregation is housed in a 1967 red brick postwar building on Middleton Road, Crumpsall.[8] Architectural historian Carol Herselle Krinsky describes it, unadmiringly, as having a "central block with projecting wings" and "a disproportionately large glass entrance wall."[9] According to architectural historian Sharman Kadish, the building is one of three Manchester area synagogues modeled on the 1934 building of Manchester's Holy Law Synagogue with its tirpartite facade in a "pleasing international style." The other two are the Manchester Reform Synagogue Jackson's Row, and the Prestwich Hebrew Congregation.[10]

On 22 April 2000 and again on 15 September 2002 antisemitic remarks were shouted at the synagogue.[11][12] Synagogue security cameras captured a murder on film in 2008, when violinist Michael Kahan was stabbed to death outside a Kosher bakery near the synagogue building by a mentally ill assailant.[13][14]


  1. ^ a b Heaton Park Hebrew Congregation on Jewish Communities and Records – UK (hosted by jewishgen.org)
  2. ^ Census of the Board of Deputies. Found at Board of Deputies website (see p. 21 of the census. Accessed 21 June 2011.
  3. ^ "Heaton Park Hebrew Congregation", Jewish Gen website. Accessed 21 June 2011.
  4. ^ a b Wise, Yaakov (20 August 2008). "The Rev Leslie Olsberg". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 22 June 2011. 
  5. ^ Cranna, Ailsa (6 December 2007). "Recovering Rabbi gets his date at the Palace". Prestwich advertiser (M.E.N. Media). Retrieved 21 June 2011. 
  6. ^ Rooth, Ben (28 July 2008). "Community 'grandfather' dies". Manchester Evening News (M.E.N. Media). Retrieved 22 June 2011. 
  7. ^ "Walker steps in at Heaton," The Jewish Chronicle, 11 July 2008, [1] Accessed 22 June 2011.
  8. ^ Bill Williams (September 1999). Sir Sidney Hamburger and Manchester Jewry: religion, city, and community. Valentine Mitchell. p. 21. ISBN 978-0-85303-363-9. Retrieved 22 June 2011. 
  9. ^ Krinsky, Carole, Synagogues of Europe; Architecture, History, Meaning, MIT Press, 1985, p. 99.
  10. ^ Kadish, Sharman, Jewish Heritage in England; An Architectural Guide," 2006, p. 152.
  11. ^ "Report of Anti-Semitic Incidents", Jewish Virtual Library. Accessed 21 June 2011
  12. ^ "The Coordination Forum for Countering Antisemitism, 15-09-2002/Britain". Antisemitism.org.il. 15 September 2002. Retrieved 21 June 2011. On 15 September 2002, antisemitic epithets were shouted in the direction of the Heaton Park Hebrew Congregation in Manchester. 
  13. ^ "Father killed on way to buy bagels," The Jewish Chronicle 6 June 2008, [2] accessed 22 June 2011.
  14. ^ "New probe into death of bagel-stab violinist," The Jewish Chronicle Dec. 4, 2008 [3] accessed 22 June 2011.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°31′12″N 2°14′56″W / 53.5201°N 2.2489°W / 53.5201; -2.2489