Sandys Row Synagogue in the East End of London has received the largest single grant yet awarded to a Grade II Listed synagogue - £254,000 under the English Heritage and Heritage Lottery Fund joint Listed Places of Worship Repair Grant Scheme.
Sandys Row is London's Dutch Ashkenazi synagogue, housed in a mid-eighteenth century former Huguenot chapel. Synagogue architect Nathan S. Joseph remodelled the building in 1870 so that the Ark was on the Jerusalem wall. It has defied dire predictions and is now set to enjoy a new lease of life with a renewal both of its roof and of its membership. Jewish Heritage Director Sharman Kadish says, “We urge other historic synagogues to follow their example and benefit from the joint repair grant scheme operated by English Heritage and the Heritage Lottery Fund”.
Sandys Row has been included in a nationwide survey of historic synagogues that Jewish Heritage is currently undertaking as part of English Heritage's initiative on “Heritage at Risk”. Besides grant aid for repairs, training days are on offer to the Jewish community, aimed at people - often volunteers - who have the responsibility of looking after historic synagogues. The training days are being run by Jewish Heritage in collaboration with the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings' "Faith in Maintenance" project.