the former

Crosby & Waterloo Synagogue

& Jewish Community

Crosby, Sefton, Mersyside




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Towns of Crosby and Waterloo

Crosby, an affluent town with a population of about 50,000, is situated between Southport to the north and Bootle to the south, just to the northwest of Liverpool in the North West of England. Waterloo is an area situated on the sea coast adjacent to Crosby.

From 1937 until 1974, Crosby (including Waterloo) was part of the urban district of Crosby in the county of Lancashire, which was then merged with the county borough of Bootle and the county borough of Southport to form the metropolitan borough of Sefton in the county of Merseyside. In 1986, Sefton became a unitary authority, when the metropolitan county of Merseyside lost its administrative status, becoming purely a ceremonial county.

Jewish Community

A small organised congregation existed in the town from the mid 1940s until the 1970s. It owed its origins to the devastation of nearby Bootle during the Blitz. The small community that had existed in Bootle from the mid 1930s, re-formed itself immediately after the war about four miles further north, in Crosby and Waterloo.(ii) The Jewish communities in Bootle, and in Crosby and Waterloo, were effectively spin-overs from the larger Liverpool community.

Congregation Data


Crosby and Waterloo Synagogue


3 Haigh Road, Waterloo, Crosby

The synagogue building consisted of three rooms on the ground floor and a further three rooms on the first floor. It was first  licensed as a place of worship on 6 December 1948(iii) The synagogue was consecrated in 1950 by Rabbi Z. Plitnick, acting rav of Liverpool and district.(iv)

Date Formed:

In June 1947, a meeting held at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Noel Landau, was stated at the time to be the first organised activity of the Crosby Jewish Community.(v)

The first services in the synagogue were held in 1948, with about 25 members.

Current Status:

The synagogue was sold in 1976. However, from about 1974 there had been no full Shabbat services, and minyanim only for the High Holy days. From the mid 1970s Jewish activities in the area were largely confined to the social and educational events put on by the Crosby Jewish Literary society.

The last president of the congregation, Arnold Brenner stated: "Children have grown up and moved away and there are far fewer young people in the congregation. With increasing vandalism and difficulties of upkeep, the building, has regretfully been sold".(vi)


Ashkenazi Orthodox.


The congregation was unaffiliated but would have been under the aegis of the Chief Rabbi.

Ministers & Readers:

There is no knowledge of the congregation ever employing a resident minister or reader, either full or part time.

Lay Officers:

All listings below of lay officers of the congregation have been extracted from Jewish Year Books.(x)


1948-1949 - M. Goodman(xi)

1949-1950 - A. Hoddes

1950-1951 - J. Bernstein(xii)

1951-1953 - N. Brenner

1953-1954 - J. Bernstein

1955-1956 - Dr. Arnold N. Brenner


1948-1956 - M. Mentel(xiii)

Hon. Secretaries

1948-1952 - Dr. Arnold N. Brenner

1952-1956 - M.B. Kirwan

1956-1961 - N. Somers

1961-1963 - A. Cowan

1963-1966 - Dr. M. Mendick

1966-1975 - N. Somers

1975-1977 - G. Elston

Registration District (BMD):

Sefton (since 1 July 2011)(xvi) - Link to Register Office Website.

Cemetery Data:

There is no Jewish cemetery in Crosby or Waterloo, although there is a Jewish cemetery in nearby Southport.


Notable Jewish Connections with Crosby and Waterloo

  • Councillor Neville Clein Goldrein (1924- 2020), a Conservative councillor, was the first Jewish Mayor of the borough of Crosby, 1966-1967.(xv)

  • Councillor Leo Hyam was Mayor of the borough of Crosby, 1968-1969. He was president of the local Trades Council and Labour Party.(xvi)


Notes & Sources
( returns to text above)

  • (i) Reserved .

  • (ii) Interview with Arnold Brenner, the Crosby congregation's last president, Jewish Chronicle 12 November 1976.

  • (iii) London Gazette, 1980. This was the address listed in Jewish Year Books from 1950.

  • (iv) Jewish Chronicle report of 8 September 1950.

  • (v) Jewish Chronicle report of 13 June 1947. The congregation was first listed in Jewish Year Book 1949, without an address.

  • (vi) Jewish Chronicle report on the synagogue's closure, 12 November 1976. The congregation was last listed in the Jewish Year Book 1977.

  • (vii) to (ix) Reserved.

  • (x) Where a person is first listed in a Jewish Year Book as holding a particular office, it is generally assumed that his term of office commenced in the year of publication of the relevant year book. During the relevant period, year books were published according to the Gregorian year, being published generally towards the end of the year prior to the year appearing the title of the year book. For example, if an officer is listed in Jewish Year Books 1951 through 1954, it is assumed that he commenced office in 1950 and continued in office until 1954. However, it should be noted that this is only an assumption and, accordingly, his actual years of office may differ from those shown here. There were no listings of lay officers (other than secretary) subsequent to 1956.

  • (xi) M. Goodman had previously served as president of the Bootle Hebrew Congregation in the 1930s.

  • (xii) J. Bernstein had previously served as president of the Bootle Hebrew Congregation in the 1930s and 1940s.

  • (xiii) H. Mentel had previously served as treasurer of the Bootle Hebrew Congregation in the 1930s.

  • (xiv) Previous registration districts: West Derby from 1 July 1837; Crosby from 1 October 1934; and Sefton South from 1 April 1980 to 1 July 2011. Any registers would now be held by the current register office.

  • (xv) Mayor Goldrein's chaplain was Rabbi Stanley Woolf of Princes Road synagogue, Liverpool. (Jewish Chronicle report of 30 December 1966 on the Mayor and Mayoress's visit to the Crosby and Waterloo synagogue; and Jewish Chronicle obituary of 9 October 2020.)

  • (xvi) Jewish Chronicle report of 31 May 1968

Sefton Jewish Community home page

Jewish Congregations in Merseyside

Jewish Communities of England home page

Page created: 21 August 2005
Data significantly expanded and notes first added: 1 August 2021
Latest revision or update: 4 August 2021

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