Current S&P Communities
Historically S&P Communities
BEVIS MARKS / LONDON
Services are conducted in the tradition of the Spanish & Portuguese Sephardic orthodox rite.
Services are held daily. Times are as follows:
Monday thru Friday at 7:30am
Sundays and Bank holidays at 9:00am
Friday night at 6:30pm in the winter (7:30pm in the summer)
Saturday morning at 8:30am.
Kiddush / Sat Morning - London
Bevis Marks is the oldest Jewish house of worship in London, established by the Sephardic Jews in 1698. At that time the worshipers met in a small synagogue in Cree Church lane; but the considerable influx of Jews made it necessary to obtain other and commodious quarters. Accordingly a committee was appointed, and in 1699 signed a contract with Joseph Avis, a Quaker, for the construction of a building. That same year the committee leased a tract of land at Plough Yard, in Bevis Marks,
The structure was completed and dedicated in 1702, and, with the exception of the roof, which was destroyed by fire in 1738, and repaired in 1749, is today as it was 200 years ago. In the interior decorations and arrangement the influence of the great Amsterdam synagogue of 1677 is apparent. In 1747 Benjamin Mendes da Costa bought the lease of the ground on which the building stood, and presented it to the congregation.
The Bevis Marks Synagogue was for more than a century the religious center of the Anglo-Jewish world, and served as a clearinghouse for congregational and individual troubles all the world over; e.g., the appeal of the Jamaican Jews for a reduction in taxation (1736); the internecine quarrel among the Barbados Jews (1753); and the aiding of seven-year-old Moses de Paz, who escaped from Gibraltar in 1777 to avoid an enforced conversion.
The synagogue formed the center of the Sephardic community of London till the foundation of the Bryanstone Street Synagogue, in 1866, after which the attendance at the functions declined so much that in 1886 the "yeidim" contemplated selling the ground and the building; but a Bevis Marks Anti-Demolition League was founded, under the auspices of H. Guedalla and A. H. Newman, and the proposed demolition was given up. The synagogue held its bicentenary celebration with great pomp in 1901.
Source: 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia