The Shalom Sussex – The Jewish Community in WWI project lasted from March 2019 to December 2020. During this time we profiled the contribution Jewish people in Sussex made during the First World War – both on the home-front and abroad on the battlefield.
Jewish people make up a small part of the Sussex demographic, and with partners and participants we realised how little information was available about this topic. Therefore during the project, we sought to research, explore and share this hidden history.
We would like to thank so many people who’ve been involved with the project during this time, partners, researchers, community groups, participants and those who’ve shown an interest in this history or offered their own family research up to share. It’s been quite a journey and we’ve been luck to find so much more material and memories than we had ever thought possible, so thank you to everyone who has made this possible!
We would have loved to continue collecting information and material but as with all funded projects, these things must sadly come to an end. To find out more about this fascinating history, you can visit our links page to see ongoing organisations, charities and groups to contact for further information – http://shalomsussex.co.uk/links/
We’ve made unexpected links with the Highdown Gardens venue in Goring, West Sussex, through the Jewish Country Houses project as well as support from Middle Street Synagogue, Brighton and the ‘The Jews of South East England’ exhibition which we borrowed and which was created by Oxford Chabad, Oxford Heritage Projects and J Trails.
We would like to give the most special thank you to our researchers and researcher coordinator without whom we wouldn’t have been able to uncover such fascinating and diverse lives.
Strike a Light – Arts & Heritage who hosted this project would like to say a huge THANK YOU for your time, patience and detective skills during this whole process, many of whom share the Jewish faith.
We supported our volunteer researchers to find and collect new information, contextualising existing material to create this new community resource and to provide archival training specifically to develop this theme enabling volunteers to gain new skills. These researchers are:
Emily Beza, Miriam Beza, Susana Connolly, Naomi Cooperman, Caroline Fisher, Samantha Frey, Alison Hulme, Sarah Paulson, Santiago Ripoll, Betty Skolnick, Elliot Thorn, Dr Diana Wilkins, and Sha Wylie.
We say also a sincere thank you to our project partners: Jewish Care, the Centre for German-Jewish Studies, and the Jewish Historical Society of England who gave talks, shared knowledge, attended events and supported the Shalom Sussex project through their time, wisdom, funds and in-kind support.
We were also lucky to receive funds from the Sussex Record Society which helped to bring this project to fruition.
Finally, we had help and engagement through the Gateways to the First World War programme which really supported the development of this project through resources and networks. Thank you for this!
We have agreed with a national group, the We Were There Too project, to share out research for their South East section, which they plan to upload to their website soon. You can see this develop here: https://www.jewsfww.uk/south-east.php
Many of the images on this website have been taken with kind permission from the project: British Jews in the First World War – We were there too.