the former

Royal Tunbridge Wells Jewish Community

(including Tunbridge Wells Jewish Fellowship)





JCR-UK is a genealogical and historical website covering all Jewish communities and
congregations throughout the British Isles and Gibraltar, both past and present.

Royal Tunbridge Wells

Royal Tunbridge Wells in southeast England, which was granted the prefix "Royal" in 1909, is a spa town in the south-western corner of the county of Kent, near the East Sussex border. It lies about 30 miles southeast of London and has a population of some 60,000. Royal Tunbridge Wells was a municipal borough until 1974, when it was merged with several adjoining areas, all within the county of Kent, to form the local government District and Borough of Tunbridge Wells.

Tunbridge Wells Jewish Community

There does not appear to have been an organised Jewish congregation in Tunbridge Well. However a Jewish ladies group existed in the late 1940s and early 1950s and a Jewish Fellowship was formed at the end of the 1950s until the early 1980s.

Organisation Data


Tunbridge Wells Jewish Fellowship(ii)


No fixed address.


Established in 1959.(iii)


The Fellowship was affiliated to Brighton and Hove New Synagogue, later known as Brighton and Hove Reform Synagogue, from about 1963 until the early 1980s (which from 1972 until 1984 was an independent Reform congregation).(iv)


The Fellowship had merged with the East Grinstead Jewish Community by the mid 1980s.(v)


None appointed.

Lay Officers:


1959 - H.L. Davis(ix)


1959-1980 - S. Blow(x)

Hon. Secretaries

1959-1970 - Mrs. D. Schwartz(xi)

1970-1976 - D. Alford(xii)

1976-1980 - J. Hersch(xiii)


 National Reports and Surveys(xv)

1977 - 18 male members

Registration District (BMDs):

Kent, since 1 April 2003(xvi) - Link to Register Office Website

Cemetery Details:

There is no Jewish cemetery in Tunbridge Wells.


Notable Jewish Connections with Tunbridge Wells

  • Sir David Lionel Goldsmid-Stern-Salomons, 2nd Baronet, JP, DL (18511925), scientific author, barrister and pioneer of road transport, was mayor of Tunbridge Wells (1894-1895).

  • Arthur David Waley, CH, CBE (born Arthur David Schloss) (1889-1966), an English orientalist and sinologist and acclaimed translator of Chinese and Japanese poetry, was born in Tunbridge Wells.

  • Andrew Zaltzman (born 1974), the brother of Helen Zaltzman, is a British comedian and author who attended the private Tonbridge School.

  • Helen Zaltzman (born 1980), the sister of Andrew Zaltzman, is an English podcaster, broadcaster and writer, was raised in Tunbridge Wells.


Other Tunbridge Wells Jewish Institutions

  • The Tunbridge Wells Jewish Ladies Guild was in existence from at least 1949 until about 1952.(xvii)


Tunbridge Wells Jewish Population Data



(The Jewish Year Book 1965)



(The Jewish Year Book 1974)



(The Jewish Year Book 1981)


Notes & Sources
( returns to text above)

  • (i) Reserved.

  • (ii) Listed in Jewish Year Books from 1960 through 1980.

  • (iii) Stated in the Jewish Year Book 1960.

  • (iv) Jewish Year Books from 1963 through 1980 referred to this affiliation and the editions from 1981 through 1983 directed all enquiries to the Brighton & Hove New Synagogue.

  • (v) The Jewish Year Book 1984 directed all enquiries to the East Grinstead community. In a Jewish Chronicle article of 24 February 1995 (Malcolm Weisman at large), Rev. Malcolm Weisman stated that the community in Tunbridge Wells had some time previously merged with the East Grinstead community.

  • (vi) to (viii) Reserved.

  • (ix) Listed as founder in the Jewish Year Books 1960 through 1962.

  • (x) Listed as chairman in the Jewish Year Books 1960 through 1980.

  • (xi) Listed as hon. secretary in the Jewish Year Books 1960 through 1970.

  • (xii) Listed as hon. secretary in the Jewish Year Books 1971 through 1976.

  • (xiii) Listed as hon. secretary in the Jewish Year Books 1977 through 1980.

  • (xiv) Reserved.

  • (xv) Reports on synagogue membership in the United Kingdom, published by the Board of Deputies of British Jews and which can be viewed on the website of the Institute of Jewish Policy Research. Click HERE for links to the various reports.

  • (xvi) Previous Registration Districts: Tonbridge from 1 July 1837 until 1 January 1980; and Tunbridge Wells from 1 January 1980 until 1 April 2003. All records would now be held by the current office.

  • (xvii) Listed in the Jewish Year Books 1950 through 1953.

Jewish Congregations in Kent

Unaffiliated Reform Congregations

Jewish Communities of England homepage

Page created: 11 October 2022
Page most recently amended: 13 October 2022

Research and formatting by David Shulman

Explanation of Terms   |   About JCR-UK  |   JCR-UK home page

Contact JCR-UK Webmaster:

JGSGB  JewishGen

Terms and Conditions, Licenses and Restrictions for the use of this website:

This website is owned by JewishGen and the Jewish Genealogical Society of Great Britain. All material found herein is owned by or licensed to us. You may view, download, and print material from this site only for your own personal use. You may not post material from this site on another website without our consent. You may not transmit or distribute material from this website to others. You may not use this website or information found at this site for any commercial purpose.

Copyright © 2002 - 2023 JCR-UK. All Rights Reserved