On Saturday 18th November there was a Shabbat service with a difference – well, a few differences in fact. Firstly, eighty one people were present, including not one but two rabbis. The reason for the excellent turn out in our community was to celebrate the 90th birthday of Joan.

As well as Rabbi Anna Gerrard conducting the service, Rabbi Danny Rich travelled from London to speak about Joan and her contribution to getting our whole community started back in 2008. Joan’s warmth of character and her excellent networking abilities helped to reach out to many people who subsequently became members.

Family and friends came to wish her well and to share a communal lunch, which resulted in an amazingly varied and delicious array of sweet and savoury dishes made by community members. It also provided an extended opportunity for us all to meet new people, reconnect with those we already know and to enjoy a community member reaching a significant milestone in their life and share in the joy and pleasure of the occasion.