New synagogue building for Potters Bar town centre

POTTERS Bar town centre has a brand new synagogue after an existing facility decided to move.

Potters Bar and Brookmans Park synagogue has been long-established at Bell Bar near Hatfield but is now moving to the centre of town.

The exact location is not being publicised for “security reasons”.

The synagogue's Malcolm Ginsberg said being coy about the location was more of a precaution than a real worry about anti-Semitism.

“The community is very good here but others have made the decision and I'm not going to argue with them about it,” he said.

The last Shabbat service at the old venue took place on the 12th December, 2009 with the inaugural Shacharit (morning) service on December 19.

Synagogue leaders are hoping the move would attract new members, particularly younger worshippers.

President Howard Lanning said: "We see the move as a major stepping-stone in the growth of the community.

"Meadowcroft is behind us now and I must thank the professional team at the United Synagogue for being with us every step of the way.

“We will now be located in the centre of Potters Bar and expect to be able to attract a younger element for whom the position of the previous shul wasn’t ideal.

“Our aim is to exploit Potters Bar's wonderful position to create a dynamic and forward-looking community."

People at the synagogue are also hoping a vibrant synagogue will attract people from north London, as Potters Bar is within reach of kosher shops and Jewish schools.

Mr Lanning added: "Our other great advantage is that, generally speaking, house prices are cheaper than other areas in the north London conurbation. 

“And the town is in the countryside surrounded by greenery.  It is a very pleasant area in which to live."

The Potters Bar and Brookmans Park synagogue was established in the 1920s as an unofficial off-shoot of the local Jewish golf club - where the High Holy Day services are still held.  It has recently become a full member community of the United Synagogue.

United Synagogue Chief Executive, Jeremy Jacobs, said: “I am delighted that the hard work and effort of the Potters Bar and Brookmans Park community has led to this re-location.

"I am sure that it will go from strength to strength and of course we are here to offer our support every step of the way.”

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