Social & Cultural Jewish Events

Spiro Ark hosts regular events showcasing the best of Jewish & Israeli artists and performers. The showings are open to everyone so no matter your cultural or religious background ! Please check our website regularly, to see what we have on offer. You can book tickets to our events below, by telephone or by emailing us at

You can read about past events by reading our Jewish Event reviews.


This is Philip Sassoon, the Babylonian Jew, the grandson of David Sassoon, head of the famous dynasty that fled Baghdad to the Far East and made a huge fortune. Handsome and dandy, a patron of the arts, he had a passion for flying and golf. Like his famous cousin, the poet Siegfried Sassoon, he never married.

Sassoon was an MP, like his father Edward before him, for Folkstone and Hythe. Damian Collins, the current MP, was so intrigued by Sassoon and his Kent mansion that he decided to write a book. Collins himself will give us a unique talk about his predecessor and will sign his new book titled Charmed Life - the Phenomenal World of Philip Sassoon.

Introduction: Dr. Saul Zadka


During WWII some 3,600 Jewish women from Palestine volunteered to serve in the British armed forces in the Middle East. For the first time ever Jewish women joined the army, wore uniform, left home to defend their homeland and to support the Jewish people around the world. The Council of Women's Organizations, headed by Hadassah Samuel, spearheaded the recruitment. This recruitment was in defiance of all conventional male thought. Not least because these women were joining the British Army - a foreign and colonial army - and this created a unique situation that cast gender and nationalist issues in a new light, these subjects are tackled here for the first time. Using archival research and 60 'last voice' interviews, Hacohen tells the story of these women: their reasons for enlistment; their social background and status; the arguments over recruiting them at all. Their military roles are analysed from a gender perspective. She also discusses the locations where they were stationed and the nature of their service there; their relations with their British colleagues; their involvement with illegal activity as members of underground organizations and the Jewish and national identity which they developed during their service. Although this female initiative was conceived in the spirit of equality, and the women who served developed positive views on the roles of women in society during their service, after the war there was disappointment as to the lack of change to how women were treated in Palestinian, and later, Israeli society.

A pathbreaking book of interest to scholars and general readers alike.

Anat Granit-Hacohen has a PhD from Bar Ilan University. She is an Israeli born to Holocaust survivors, and she served as an officer for Culture and Education in the Israeli Air Force, and as an emissary to the Jewish community in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She has published several articles in academic journals and lectured at numerous academic forums.

How many know that hundreds of Libyan Jews of British nationality were deported to Bergen Belsen? Academic and author Yossi Sucary comes to us from Israel to talk about the hitherto neglected story of the North African Holocaust during WWII - the Nazi occupation of Libya, the desert concentration camps - in which hundreds of Jews died of starvation and disease -the bombings and the deportations. Sucary's latest novel, Benghazi -Bergen-Belsen is based on real stories told to him by his grandmother, a Holocaust survivor. His book has been selected to be taught in Holocaust studies in Israel's schools. ...


  • Central Synagogue - 36, Hallam St, London W1W 6NW - easily reached by public transport - Centre, Victoria and Bakerloo Lines
  • HGSS - Norrice Lea, London N2 0RE - East Finchley Underground Station- Jubilee and Metropolitan Lines, buses 102, H2
  • Liberal Jewish Synagogue - 28 St. John's Wood Road, London, NW8 7HA - St John's Wood Underground Jubilee Line, buses: 13, 82, 46, 113, 139, 187, 189, 274
  • Tikun - 1117 Finchley Rd, Temple Fortune, NW11 0QB - Golders Green Underground, Northern Line, busses: 82, 102, 460
  • The Spiro Ark at Hampstead Shtiebel - 10a Canfield Gardens, London NW6 3JS - one minute behind Finchley Road Underground Station Jubilee and Metropolitan Lines and Waitrose, busses 13, 82, 113, 187, 268
  • The Spiro Residence - Kidderpore Avenue - NW3 - Finchley Road Underground Station, busses 13 82, 113


T: 020 7794 4655
F: 020 7794 4650

The Spiro Ark, Flat 106, 15 Kidderpore Ave.
London NW3 7SJ T: 020 7794 4655 E:

Registered Charity No 107 0926. A company limited by guarantee.
Registered No 361 3280. Registered office 788-790 Finchley Road London NW11 7TJ