Manchester Jewish Museum

by | Apr 25, 2024 | News

On April 2nd, we ventured down to Manchester to see the Manchester Jewish Museum. Kerry, Anna and Head of the Board, Philip, spent some time learning about their redevelopment, educational offers, and the stories they share with visitors.

Occupying a former Spanish and Portuguese synagogue, the museum is within a Grade II listed building with an impressive redevelopment and extension. The original synagogue was completed in 1874 but the building became redundant through the migration of the Jewish population away. It re-opened as a museum in March 1984 telling the story of Jewish History in Manchester. The museum holds over 31,000 items in its collection, documenting the story of Jewish migration and settlement as well as over 530 oral history testimonies, over 20,000 photographs, 138 recorded interviews with Holocaust survivors and refugees and other objects, documents and ephemera.

Throughout the museum you can find artefacts and stories of the people that made Manchester their home. Those who passed through, and those that left a lasting impression on the city. Taking you on a journey through the history of the local Jewish community, visitors are greeted by interactive areas allowing you to see photos and hear the stories from the oral history collections.

Ending in the original synagogue, visitors are able to see the preserved space. With the new museum building attached, the walk through the museum and site is truly breath-taking. Seeing the Sephardi synagogue and hearing the voices of the people that made the area what it is today is an absolutely wonderful experience.

Along with the beautiful and informative exhibitions, there are plenty of hands on learning available. With a thriving educational offer and events across the year, Manchester Jewish Museum is a lively place. 2024 marks 150 years of the synagogue and there are events throughout the year to commemorate this. Click below to book your visit!

All photos by Anna Stein of the SJHC

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