Jewish Heritage Trail project receives massive funding boost

Chabad-Lubavitch of Islington is behind the Islington Jewish Heritage Trail project

Chabad-Lubavitch of Islington is behind the Islington Jewish Heritage Trail project - Credit: Chabad-Lubavitch

An Islington Jewish heritage project has been awarded a major grant by the mayor of London.

Islington Jewish Heritage Trail has received £24,948 from the mayor's Untold Stories fund as part of his Commission for Diversity in the Public Realm.

The project, organised by Chabad-Lubavitch of Islington, will celebrate the rich Jewish history of the borough and its landmarks by developing resources for a self-guided tour and delivering a series of free guided walking tours.

Islington was once one of the most prominent Jewish communities in the UK, yet the last local synagogue closed in 1967 and until recently there were no Jewish community groups.

The aim of this project is to raise awareness of the Jewish presence and contributions to the borough, celebrating Jewish culture and identity while engaging in discussions about multiculturalism, contributions of migrant communities and religious minorities, and their role in shaping the identity and heritage of the city and the nation.

Rabbi Mendy Korer, chief executive of Chabad Islington, said: "The Untold Stories project has offered us a unique opportunity to embark on an exciting journey. A lot of the Islington history is unknown and often surprising, and we can now finally share it with the public thanks to the funding from the Mayor of London’s Commission for Diversity in the Public Realm.

"This project will uncover the hidden Jewish history of Islington to anyone strolling through the neighbourhood, thereby bringing its stories alive."

The project will develop resources for self-guided tours of 10 sites important to the history and heritage of the Jews in Islington. To coincide with the launch of the resources, including videos, descriptions and online and printed maps, there will be a programme of 12 monthly free guided tours.

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The funding is part of the £1m Untold Stories programme to champion diversity in the capital’s public spaces and ensure London’s landmarks and monuments reflect the achievements of all who have contributed to the success of the city.

Sadiq Khan established the Commission for Diversity in the Public Realm to improve the representation of Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities, women, LGBTQ+ communities and deaf and disabled people and those from a range of socio-economic backgrounds in the public realm.