Council Information

It is important to note that Government guidelines have changed.  People have been asked to only leave their homes for the following reasons:-

  • Shopping for basic necessities, as infrequently as possible.
  • One form of exercise a day – for example a run, walk, or cycle – alone or with members of your household.
  • Any medical need, to provide care or to help a vulnerable person.
  • Travelling to and from work, but only where this is absolutely necessary and cannot be done from home.

As a result, the Government has ordered the following:-

  • Closure of all religious buildings.
  • Closure of all shops selling non-essential goods, including clothing and electronic stores and other premises including libraries, playgrounds and outdoor gyms, and places of worship.
  • Stopping all gatherings of more than two people in public – excluding people you live with.
  • Stopping all social events, including weddings and other ceremonies, but excluding funerals.

We stress that the community must adhere to these guidelines.  It is more important than ever that we take responsibility and socially distance ourselves when in shops or communal places.  Naturally, we appreciate it will be difficult for many in our community who are used to socialising and attending shul. However, it is our duty as good citizens that we follow the above advice to stop the virus and help the communities we live within.

We also understand that reliable information is key during this period.  The Jewish Manchester website has been adapted and will be updated on a regular basis.  This will ensure that the community has a reliable source of information as the situation develops.

The Jewish Representative Council of Greater Manchester and Region,

Community Security Trust

Jewish Leadership Council

Email: [email protected]    

Tel: 0161 720 8721 

CST [email protected]

JLC Tel 203 137 3146       Notes for editors For Government Guide Lines ACCESS the following site :


We are grateful to the Community Security Trust and the JLC for convening several conference calls in order to allow the communal leadership to discuss the present situation.  During these unprecedented times, we should be reassured that our charities and professional organisations are facing up to the challenges in order to look after the vulnerable and facilitate the continuation of communal life. 

The understandable concerns of the community have been discussed at length.  We will be meeting regularly to ensure that our organisations and religious institutions are well placed to deal with the situation as it develops.  As a communal leadership, we have always enjoyed excellent relationships with wider society.  Any specific concerns have been registered and listened to by the relevant authorities.

It is important during these times that the community has a reliable source of information.  The Jewish Manchester website, now has a corona virus page to enable useful material to be disseminated, daily. It is important that the whole community is aware of this resource so please share the webpage widely.


Please be assured that we are working as hard as possible with the local supermarkets, kosher food shops and suppliers to ensure there are enough supplies for everyone providing people act responsibly.  Please do not hoard or panic buy and follow the strict health guidelines re social distancing.

Deliveries: we also  are encouraging the kosher shops to increase their deliveries where possible, especially for those living north of the M60, which has been an issue.


We are working  with JVN ,The Fed ,The Nicky, L’chaim, The League of Jewish Women, the local charities who specialise in Mental Health Issues  and the local authorities, in order to ensure that those who are self-isolating, as well as vulnerable members of society, have the social welfare support they need; whether it’s shopping, prescriptions or buddying (ringing people and keeping in touch).  No one should feel alone and abandoned. 


There has been a lot of concern concerning what happens (heaven forbid) should someone pass away.

  • If someone passes away due to Coronavirus, the hospital will deal with everything apart from the actual funeral.
  • If someone passes away from normal causes within reasons, normal things will apply accept that the ruling for the funeral and shiva will still apply .
  • Funerals can be attended only by the immediate family – NO ONE ELSE.
  • No one should visit a shiva house and only family should say prayers in the shiva house.  No one should go to a shiva house to join in prayers.
  • Kaddish: Chabad have said they will try and provide a service so Kaddish can be said.
  • All unveilings are cancelled for the foreseeable future.
  • The cemeteries will remain open so people can visit graves providing they observe social distancing.


We will update our website on a daily basis and send out a daily briefing by email (hopefully every morning) which will take in any information that comes in overnight.

  • It is vital that all members of the community observe the Health Guidelines ,those at risk and vulnerable self-isolate.
  • Those who are fit and healthy should work from home if possible and only go to work if their job is part of the essential work that can’t be carried out from their own home.
  • No public gatherings are allowed.
  • There should be NO gatherings for prayers  in private houses (including their gardens).  The shuls and shteibels are closed  and will remain closed.
  • Only shop when necessary and exercise once a day and only singly or with immediate family and observe social distancing.

If we adhere to health guidelines the epidemic might end sooner.  If we don’t, there is a very grave risk of the disease spreading even more rapidly.

Finally, please help to make sure this information is sent to all your contacts thereby the more people we can reach the better.

In the next few communiques we will be providing not only updates, but moral boosting tips and fitness tips to keep everyone healthy, both physically and mentally.

Keep safe and well.


Russell Conn


Board of Deputies Advice

Coronavirus advice
The Board of Deputies is currently following Government guidelines on how to contain the transmission of coronavirus. It is vital that we all implement these precautions. Should the guidelines change, we will review our policies accordingly. You can find all the latest updated information here: ‘Can I help you’ card is attached and can be downloaded.
Marie van der Zyl’s appeal for volunteers
“These are exceptional times for our community and our country and we all need to do whatever we can to help those who are most affected by this awful crisis. If you can volunteer with any of the Jewish community organisations, with the NHS or informally by helping neighbours in need, you will be doing something tangible and valuable. We can get through this together  – we all need to do our bit.”
Volunteering opportunities
JVN is working with charities in the community to ensure that we can get all volunteering requests out to as many people in as many ways as possible.The organisation has set up a dedicated page on our website for all Covid-19 related volunteering opportunities in both London and Manchester. You can visit the page
Pesah food guidelines for the UK Jewish community, 
In the current unprecedented circumstances, many members of the Jewish community are either in self-isolation or are not in a position to be able to visit a Kosher supermarket to do their Pesach shopping. With this in mind, a number of the UK’s main Kashrut authorities have issued special guidelines for Passover this year, providing information on a significant number of products which are more widely available. You can see our round-up of advice here.
Israeli Embassy
The Israeli Embassy is continuing to operate with the necessary adjustments according to UK and Israel’s regulations. The Civil Society Affairs department would like to offer their assistance, particularly to help support or develop initiatives that utilize technology to continue the regular activities of the UK Jewish Community. In the meantime, the Embassy is proud to invite you to a live Q&A session with the Ambassador Mark Regev, which will take place tomorrow at 4pm.
As you may know the Board of Deputies staff are now working remotely. In view of the latest Government restrictions we would ask that you contact your organisation and inform the relevant people there that if they usually send payments to the Board by cheque that they now do so online. This is to try and minimise as much as possible the need for our staff to visit a bank to pay in cheques or to post them which could mean delay and/or loss. For our bank details please email [email protected]. Thank you for your cooperation.
Reminder – Dates of future Board Meetings
11.00 – 13.30           Sunday 3 May14.15 – 16.30           Sunday 21 JunePlease note that during the current crisis all meeting dates are subject to change. We are working on the best way to hold virtual meetings.

Twenty-four mentions this week, overwhelmingly on different aspects of the coronavirus crisis.

Religious burials

Religious burials to be protected as MPs pass amended coronavirus bill

Board urges government to ‘provide exemptions’ over proposed virus cremations

Government to amend emergency coronavirus bill to stop cremation against families’ wishes

Board calls on government to ‘respect religious traditions’ and allow burial for coronavirus deaths

UK to give religious exemptions for cremation during coronavirus pandemic

Leading UK Jewish Group Expresses Concern Coronavirus Bill Will Violate Jewish Burial Laws


Tributes Pour in After Leading UK Rabbi Dies of Coronavirus

Cultural change – an unexpected side-effect of Covid-19

Kosher caterers gear up to deliver Pesach food as coronavirus forces people indoors

England Rushes to Protect Its Elderly Amid Coronavirus Scare

Rallying call from chiefs to help all during coronavirus crisis

Coming together to support and sustain our community organisations

Community volunteers offer help to the needy just as it’s needed

Houses of worship pitch in to help those left vulnerable by virus outbreak

In the US and beyond, houses of worship pitch in to help those left vulnerable by virus outbreak

Israeli president sends solidarity and prayers in an address to the Jewish diaspora

Two ultra-Orthodox Jews die in London as coronavirus shutters most communities

2 Orthodox Jews die of coronavirus in London; another succumbs in Paris

Two from strictly Orthodox community die after contracting coronavirus

‘Hundreds of volunteers’ step forward to help JCC fight coronavirus spread in Stamford Hill

‘Devastating’: vicar and headteacher among latest UK coronavirus victims

Jewish leaders fear ultra-Orthodox Jews have missed isolation message

Community rallies round to support those most in need

Board of Deputies/JLC merger

JLC chair describes ‘disappointment’ at failure to find unity with Board of Deputies president over merger

Simon Round

Communications Officer

020 7543 5437/ 07484 082483

Can I Help You Card download


This project is being co- ordinated by the Jewish Representative Council (JRC), is to ensure that all organisations, Shuls, Community groups etc. as well as individuals are contacted to identify, what action or projects they are undertaking during the period of the Corona virus pandemic to support their community. In this period, we all need to support our community and the wider community. 

We know that some areas of this community are more isolated then others and collating this information will help in targeting support to those who need it most.

The JRC have developed a team that are leading on Community issues, please respond to the office to the questions below on [email protected] so the JRC can assist with the co- ordination of support at this time.

·       What is your idea for a project and what support do you need to action it?

·       Do you already have a group of volunteers?

·       Do you have an existing project that could be used for the benefit of the community?

·       Do you need the project promoted?

·       Do you require access to funding opportunities?

·       How are you promoting the project at present?

·       Do you require volunteers?


While we all appreciate the extra efforts, everyone is prepared to make,


Have to acknowledge and comply with the Government guidelines that have recently been implemented, and NHS guidelines to control the spread of the Coronavirus (Covid-19 ).

Contact :  The JRC Office – 0161 720 8721

Sent on behalf of Lynne Ridsdale, Deputy Chief Executive Bury Council

Dear all

As you are aware the community hubs are now live. We are already receiving calls from vulnerable people and providing proactive support through the VCSE sector.  At this stage the Hubs are focused on identifying people in need of help and determining the community capacity available to support. We expect that the role will grow imminently to include food distribution but arrangements are still being determined nationally – more information to follow.

Please note that we have decided to advertise a single number (0161 253 5353) for the Hubs and not be specific about physical locations. This is to make it straight forward for the public to access support and avoid confusion about which Hubs cover particular towns. Be assured that Hubs will be operating locally to ensure adequate coverage but we will stay silent on these details for the public to avoid confusion. Your local Hub Lead will, however, be in touch with you this week to introduce themselves and confirm their coverage arrangements. We welcome support and engagement from Ward Councillors with this work.

In support of the work of councillors and all wider volunteers we have drafted some principles about the basis of volunteering at this time. The advice is attached and seeks to harness as much local capacity is practicable whilst keeping arrangements safe and controlling infection. (Please note that this will be formatted and re-circulated asap).

We are also mindful of the emotional health and wellbeing of our staff and all councillors at this time.  The Council has therefore implemented an Employee Assistance Programme, details attached, which provides strictly confidential and 24/7 access to telephone and web based support for practical and welfare support. The provision applies to all Councillors too and we encourage you to access this support if you require any help in managing the additional pressure and emotional impact of this difficult time. Details are attached.

Finally, we have now received a number of questions from councillors which will be answered and a rhythm of FAQs will be established.

Thank you for your support

Communications Team