The Middlesbrough Jewish Community appears to have always used the English language for everyday use and the Hebrew language for prayer. The original members of the community, prior to 1910, do appear to have kept themselves to themselves, with little interaction with the wider community. This may have been just a case of strangers in a strange environment because after 1910 the Jewish people were rapidly assimilating into all aspects of English life.
The Jewish immigrants were willing to allow their children to attend Christian schools for their general education. The majority of the first generation of English-born Jews in Middlesbrough all attended Christian schools with very little intolerance shown towards them from their Christian contemporaries. The Jewish children openly associated with Gentile children, both inside and outside of school hours.
When the Jewish children became adults they continued to associate with the Gentile population in their social activities with only one reported incident of discrimination. The only time any social activities did not include interaction with the Gentile population were the activities pursued within the communal hall of the synagogue. The social activities within the synagogue were no different than the social activities pursued by the Christians in their church halls.
The majority of the Jewish people in Middlesbrough did tend to live within walking distance of the synagogue, but this does not mean they were the only residents of those areas. Jews and Gentiles lived side by side with each other, with no signs of intolerance from either side.
The majority of the Jewish people of Middlesbrough were fully integrated with the Gentile population in the working environment. They either employed Gentiles, conducted business with them or worked in a Gentile environment. There were no signs of intolerance from either side in the working environment.
The Middlesbrough Jewish Community displayed considerable loyalty to England as a nation. The men and women of the Middlesbrough Jewish Community played their full roles in both World Wars. They did not perceive themselves as either English or Jewish but of English nationality who were of the Jewish religion.
However, the Jewish people in Middlesbrough maintained their religious and. cultural distinctiveness. Jewish children were all taught their faith in the synagogue and the home. The synagogue remained the most important place for their religious observation, although observation was practised in the home each day. They did keep their strict dietary laws with the help of a Gentile butcher. They never kept their religion a closely guarded secret, which is probably the reason why they never faced any serious intolerance from the Gentile population.
The Jewish people of Middlesbrough kept their strong kinship ties within their families, their community and with Jewish people of other nationalities. The marital and family ties were as strong as ever. The reason that few Jews married Gentiles was not because of any anti-Christian feeling but to maintain their own religion.
The first generation of English-born Jews residing in Middlesbrough between 1910 and 1960 were of English nationality and Jewish faith. Although there is a need for more research into this subject the evidence shows the Jewish people of Middlesbrough were a unique group who combined their Englishness and Jewishness into a surely balanced Anglo-Jewish identity.