the former

Tilehurst United Synagogue Membership Group

Tilehurst, Reading, Berkshire




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Tilehurst, Berkshire, is a suburb of the town of Reading and lies to the west of the centre of the town. The suburb is partly within the Borough of Reading and partly within the adjoining unitary authority of West Berkshire (formerly the District of Newbury).

Jewish Community

An evacuee Jewish congregation was established during World War II, but it did not appear to survive beyond the end of the war.

Congregation Data


Tilehurst United Synagogue Membership Group

Formation and Addresses:

The congregation was formed in December 1941, when the Jewish Chronicle reported:

"A United Synagogue Membership Group has now been formed in Tilehurst. Sabbath services are held at the Tilehurst Bowling Green Pavilion, and arrangements are being made for religious education. All interested should communicate with the Hon. Secretary, Mrs. M. C. Woolfson, 49, Armour Road, Tilehurst."(ii)

High Holyday Festival services had been held earlier in the year, when the Jewish Chronicle reported in September 1941:

"TILEHURST, READING - High Festival Services will be held at the "Bird in Hand" Hall, Lower Armour Road, Tilehurst. Tickets: 161, Kentwood Hill, Tilehurst, and 3, Thurlmere Avenue, Tilehurst."(iii)

Date Closed:

Closed in about 1945/6(iv)


Ashkenazi Orthodox


The Membership Group was linked to the United Synagogue.


Rev. Joseph Wolf - from at least 1942 until about 1945(viii)

Lay Officers:

Wardens - E. Hillel and S. Levy - from at least 1943 until about 1945.(ix)

Financial Representatives:

B. Schama - at least 1943 to unknown date.(x)

W. Isenberg  in and about 1945.(xi)

Hon. Secretary and Secretary:

Mrs. M. C. Woolfson - in and about 1941.(xii)

Rev. J. Wolf - in and about 1945.(xiii)

Cemetery Details

See Cemeteries of the United Synagogue.

There is no Jewish cemetery in Reading.


Other Tilehurst Jewish Institutions or Organisations

  • Reading and Tilehurst Ladies Guild (formed in 1943 and still active under that name until at least the mid 1960s, holding charitable and social events.)(xiv)


Notes & Sources
( returns to text above)

  • (i) Reserved.

  • (ii) Jewish Chronicle report of 19 December 1941.

  • (iii) Jewish Chronicle report of 19 September 1941.

  • (iv) The congregation's sole listing (without an address) was in the Jewish Year Book 1945/6, the first published following World War II. There is no evidence of the continued existence of the congregation subsequent to the publication of this year book.

  • (v) to (vii) Reserved.

  • (viii) Jewish Chronicle reports and listing as minister in Jewish Year Book 1945/6. To view a short profile of Rev. Wolf, hold the cursor over his name.

  • (ix) Election reported in Jewish Chronicle of 9 July 1943 and listed as wardens in Jewish Year Book 1945/6.

  • (x) Mr. Schama's election as financial representative was reported in the Jewish Chronicle of 9 July 1943.

  • (xi) Mr. Isenberg was listed as financial representative in the Jewish Year Book 1945/6.

  • (xii) Mrs Woolfson is referred to a Hon. secretary in the Jewish Chronicle report of 19 December 1941.

  • (xiii) Rev. Wolf is listed as secretary in the Jewish Year Book 1945/6.

  • (xiv) Various Jewish Chronicle reports and listings in Jewish Year Books from 1947 through 1959.

Reading Jewish Community home page

List of United Synagogue Congregations (and Membership Groups)

World War II Evacuee Communities

Jewish Congregations in Berkshire

Jewish Communities of England homepage

Page created: 2 May 2006
Data expanded and notes first added: 16 July 2021
Page most recently amended: 10 September 2023

Research by David Shulman, assisted by Steven Jaffe
Formatting by David Shulman

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