13 December 2018
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British Jews

Below is a very brief history of Judaism and the Jewish people in Britain.

People of the Jewish faith have been settled in Britain for many centuries, there are records of Jews living in England as far back as the 10th century.

However the history of England shows that they were expelled from the country during the 12th century, and were only allowed to resettle in large numbers in the 16th century by Oliver Cromwell. After this they prospered and were successful in many areas of British life, including commerce and politics. Indeed in the 1870's Benjamin Disraeli who was born Jewish became the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

In the 20th century between the two world wars there was a sharp rise in anti Semitism across Europe including the UK. This lead to the significant immigration to the UK of Jewish people fleeing persecution from mainland Europe, especially Germany.

The last population census of the UK in 2001 showed that the number of British Jews in the country was 266,740. The census and also other surveys estimate that about 72 per cent of British Jews lived in London or the surrounding southern counties. The greatest population of Jewish people in the capital are in the borough of Barnet. There are also substantial communities in the North West, in Manchester as well as in Scotland.

In the UK British Jews are prominent and successful in business, politics as well as the arts, who have made significant contributions to British society in these fields.

Below is a list Jewish festivals that are help every year:

Purim
Pesach or Passover
Shavuot
Rosh Hashanah
Yom Kippur
Succot
Simchat Torah
Chanukah

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