Shalom Life | July 01, 2014

Historic Torah Scroll Returned to Jewish Community

British Museum returns the scroll after over a century

By: Hugh Holt

Published: May 29th, 2014 in News » World

One of four Torah scrolls that had been kept in the Royal Cornwall Museum for over 120 years, has been given to the Jewish community of Cornwall.

On behalf of the museum, the Duke of Gloucester returned the centuries old scroll in a ceremony on Wednesday.

Kept in the British museum since 1892, the Torah scroll had been repaired and returned to Kehillat Kernow, the Jewish community of Cornwall. According to reports from the BBC, the Royal Cornwall Museum came into possession of this scroll after the closing of the Falmouth Synagogue.

Approved in March 2013 following a formal request from leaders of Kehillat Kernow, the scroll’s return was secured by the trustees of The Royal Institution of Cornwall. Trustees also sought the advice of the Museum’s Association ethics committee.

In a BBC report, Kehillat Kernow chairman Harvey Kurzfield said: “It is going to be used in a living, vibrant Jewish community 350 years after it was first used in a Jewish community… To think that it has now come back into use is a great link with the past.”

On Wednesday, the Duke of Gloucester returned the restored scroll after more than 100 years.

It is believed that this document is the first kosher Torah scroll in England to be given back by a museum.

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