Poets Road Synagogue
This is a picture of the beautiful large synagogue that was at 59 Poets Road from 1875 until it closed down in 1967 and was knocked down in 1970. The side wall of the synagogue, which is a support wall for the neighbouring houses, and a pillar remain.
Professor David Newman OBE writes: “My father Rabbi Isaac Newman was the last rabbi and we lived on top of the premises from 1958-1969. We actually “squatted” there for over two years after it closed down and until we eventually moved to Barnet.
“The synagogue was known as the Dalston Synagogue despite the fact that it was actually in Canonbury. When they later built a synagogue in Shacklewell Lane in Hackney (the real Dalston) it had to be called the New Dalston Synagogue so as not to confuse the two. To the best of my knowledge these were the only two cathedral types of synagogue which existed in Islington. The Shacklewell Lane site is now a mosque.
“The Jewish population of this area – Newington Green Road, and then along Green lanes and Albion Road towards Clissold Park and Stoke Newington – appears to have been quite large from the early part of the twentieth century and through until the 1950s when it declined. The fact that Poets Road synagogue was built in the 1870’s would indicate that this was one of the first areas of movement out of the East End.”
David is working on a book entitled ‘Growing up on the 73 Bus’. Anyone interested or who has information to offer on the history of the Jewish community in Islington is invited to contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.