Kehilat Middlesbrough Newsletter No 25 September 2008 page 1 (of 5)
Read the Book!
I just finished reading your book, and I must say it is fascinating reading for anyone even remotely connected to M'bro. As you know I was born and bred in the Boro and was told that there were 120 known Jewish families living there at the time
I was particularly touched by Jonathan Isserlin's comments about my late father, Morris Saville o'h and I do remember how both my parents made a special effort to make the newly arrived Isserlin family welcome. I recall Dr Isserlin o'h being described as the bone specialist!
My Dad was one of the first to hear about anyone in hospital and made sure to personally take them chicken or smoked salmon sandwiches lovingly prepared by my Mum o'h. He made a point of staying with the patient only a few minutes, a limud that his offspring learned to follow.
I found an old class mate of mine from Kirby, Joan Reed through the "Remember When" articles in the Mbro local press and we exchanged letters and recalled how we used to sit together 'swotting' for exams in the local library. She had the greatest respect for the Jewish religion and never pressed me to eat in her home. She attended the Closing Ceremony of the Shul, but sadly passed away soon after from a heart condition.
I enjoy listening to Rev Kersh's chazanut recordings. I made a point of visiting him when he came to Jerusalem in the 80's. I shook his hand and I thanked him for being my first teacher of modern Hebrew, a rare feat in those days!
I myself taught at the cheder for a while on Sundays when I was home for the weekend from the Gateshead Sem.
I always thought that it was Pamela Cohen who lost her shoe in the boggy field when we got lost at that fateful matza ramble, seems it was Rachelle Schmulevitch! I can still recall the taste of the freshly produced milk, still warm from the cow!
I can clearly remember your grandparents [Ed note: Abraham and Bella Wiseman], and recall what tzadikim they were.
Thanks to the encouragement of my father and Sam Hyman o'h, many M'bro people have made aliya, and thanks to M'bro community that made such a good impression of Yiddishkeit and respect for each and every one. Ruth Posner, nee Saville Bet Shemesh, Israel
Your book arrived today, and I had a six-hour nostalgia binge with it!
Many thanks for your hard work. Although I regard myself as thoroughly computer compatible it is so much nicer to have hard copy and real pages to turn over. I kvell every time someone refers to the gravestone project, but you must be in continuous kvell with your massive efforts. [Ed note: I believe that your gravestone project has become the centre-piece of the website. Most of the Google enquiries I receive these days are from people who have found family names in the burial lists. The fact that it occupies 40 pages in the book emphasises just how much work you put into it - the credit is all yours, Bernard]
You have two contributions coming. Firstly I noticed in your opus that David Simon has a video of the shul, so I rang him up to suggest he send a DVD of it to you, and he is doing so. The second contribution is, hopefully, from me. My son-in-law Neville did a video of the closing ceremony and gave me a copy. I assumed in my aged way that I had sent it to you, but when I looked I could not find it on the site. The reason for my resumption of interest was that I had transferred my important VCRs to DVD before binning them and the machine. Finding that you probably hadn't got a copy I prepared to copy my DVD for you, and, horror of horror, I hadn't transferred it. Neville no longer has a copy, but I dug down in our dustbin and retrieved it. Once I can borrow a VCR player I will transfer it for you. Bernard Bookey
I have now uploaded the video I took of the closing ceremony onto You Tube. I have converted it into 4 x MP4 files. Here is the link;