By COLlive reporter
The Chabad Lubavitch Centre in Ilford, England, is moving to a temporary premises on the north side of the Gants Hill roundabout, whilst their current site is redeveloped.
A deal was struck after the center was approached by a Housing Association to build much needed housing above its existing building after which the newly built ground floor will be returned for the exclusive use of a new Chabad House.
“This is a 2 year project in the making which began some 5 years ago,” says Shliach Rabbi Aryeh Sufrin MBE who is marking this year the 30th anniversary of his Shlichus with his wife Devorah.
“With the changing dynamics of the community, this redevelopment will give Chabad Lubavitch locally the opportunity to evaluate and strengthen our financial stability whilst planning for the ever changing needs on this side of London & throughout Essex for the next 5 – 10 years and PG beyond.
“Together with my wife Devorah we have been privileged to develop a leading role in the wider community over a 30 year period, having arrived in Ilford in 1983, at the behest of the Lubavitcher Rebbe to support the activities begun by my Parents the Late Rev Aron Dov & Hennie Sufrin, seven years earlier. During this time we have steered and seen amazing positive results which have had a life changing impact on thousands of people and their families.
“However, we recognize that this is a changing community both demographically and numerically, which needs a response befitting the challenges that the Community now faces. The requirement for change leaves no room for complacency and with this redevelopment project we have found one of numerous future ways that we will be able to provide an even more extensive and viable service for the wider Jewish Community.
“With the success of our Buckhurst Hill branch under Rabbi Odom & Henny Brandman, we know that a migrating Jewish community does NOT mean its end but rather a revamp on assessing the community’s needs. Part of our assessment will be to look at opening further satellites in neighboring communities in rural Essex.”