More than £320,000 given to US for Willesden Cemetery restoration

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

More than £320,000 given to US for Willesden Cemetery restoration

An old Jewish headstone in a cemetery
An old Jewish headstone in a cemetery

5 Old jewish cemetery  PolandThe United Synagogue has been given more than £320,000 to restore Willesden Cemetery, one of London’s most important Victorian Jewish landmarks.

The money from the Heritage Lottery Fund is part of a £2m grant proposal that will pay for renovations as well as for a new visitor centre, a permanent exhibition and an online educational project.

Willesden contains the graves of Julius Vogel, the first Jewish Prime Minister of New Zealand; Lionel de Rothschild, the first Jewish Member of Parliament and his son, the first Member of the House of Lords; Jewish scientist Rosalind Franklin who helped discover DNA; Hannah Rosebery, once the richest woman in the world; and Jack Cohen, founder of Tesco’s, among other notable names.

Ahead of the organisation’s 150th anniversary, United Synagogue bosses said they were delighted with the financial help to revive the cemetery, with President Steve Pack calling on Jewish families to “get involved”.

US Heritage Chief Alex Goldberg said the money would help save Willesden for future generations. “We are looking to create an understanding of our past and what it means for the both our contemporary community and wider society today,” he said.

“That is why alongside renovating the cemetery we want to use both digital and more traditional educational tools to tell the story of our British Jewish community, the lives, culture and religion of those buried there.”

The project includes an initiative to increase the cemetery’s biodiversity and replant the Jewish medieval garden, after newly-discovered archived files revealed the original flora planted, many of which have links to Biblical or Psalmic references.

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...


Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.


There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.


In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.


Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish Newsalso produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more: