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Limmud

Limmud is dedicated to Jewish learning in all its variety with a global reputation for creating events with a lively approach to Jewish learning. What started as a single conference for Jewish teachers in 1980, has become a global Jewish education phenomenan. With an ethos to help each Jew on the next step in their… Read more »

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Limmud is dedicated to Jewish learning in all its variety with a global reputation for creating events with a lively approach to Jewish learning. What started as a single conference for Jewish teachers in 1980, has become a global Jewish education phenomenan.

With an ethos to help each Jew on the next step in their Jewish journey, Limmud events are inspired, led and run by volunteers. They are committed to harnessing the energy of people from right across the Jewish community – all ages, all religious affiliations and none – and from across the world.

Brighton & Hove’s contribution began after a most enjoyable trip to Reading Day Limmud in 2002, when it was suggested that perhaps Brighton & Hove could organise one as well.  After some initial meetings early in 2003 it was decided that the first Brighton & Hove Day Limmud would be at Blatchington Mill School in the Autumn of 2004.  With the strapline “From the Sea to the Stars”, the event, chaired by Irvyn Isaacs, took place on 24October 2003 with an attendance of nearly 500 visitors and presenters. The presenters included Brighton-born journalist, Alex Brummer and political scientist, Emanuele Ottolenghi as well as a number of our home-grown celebrities.

Planning for the second event, again to be held at Blatchington Mill School, started in May 2005 and was set for 22October 2006 chaired by Ivor Richards.We were pleased to welcome as presenters the inspirational Clive Lawton, founder of the Limmud movement, local MP Celia Barlow and Sir Ivan Lawrence among many others.

In January 2008, local Limmudniks felt ready for another Brighton Day – this time with a change of venue and season. Chaired by Michael Davids, it took place at Roedean School in March 2009. Presenters, such as the sometimes controversial Julie Burchill,  local novelist Peter James and  TV vet Marc Abrahams, and ensured an excellent attendance from both adults and children and a great deal of animated discussion amongst the participants.

The fourth and most recent local Limmud was held at the University of Sussex on 22May 2011, chaired by Michelle and Gordon Kay. Renamed Sussex Day Limmud, to reflect the wider Jewish communities across the county, there were over 65 presenters and 75 sessions, it was one of the largest day Limmud programmes on record. Presenters included Geoffrey Alderman, Lord Beecham, and Scarlett Epstein and music was provided by Daniel Cainer, and the local Yiddish Choir with magic provided by Russell Levinson. Again attendance was excellent and the feedback from those who came was overwhelmingly positive.

One suggestion by Rabbi Elizabeth Tikvah Sarah in the audience on at a panel session on the future of Brighton Jewry, caused the spin-off of Sussex Lishmah. This was a series of Limmud style learning sessions run on Thursday evenings for three six-week seasons between 2011 and 2014 which continued the spirit of these events.

It is hoped that there will be future Limmuds in the community, but for now Brighton & Hove is usually well-represented at the UK Limmud National Conference each December.

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