About Us

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We are Shir Hayim – ‘Song of Life’. Our egalitarian services are always warm and held in intimate surroundings. They are characterised by flexibility and respect for both traditional and modern Jewish forms. Families sit together, and we encourage all members to participate without regard to gender. We warmly welcome all visitors.

Founded in 1974 as the Hampstead Reform Jewish Community, we are a small, friendly, caring community who meet every Saturday morning and many Friday evenings. We celebrate the High Holy Days and other Jewish festivals, and also have regular communal meals (chavurah-style) and social events. We are a constituent of the Movement for Reform Judaism, using the Reform Movement’s egalitarian prayer book, and are the only Reform community in the Hampstead area.

As a small community, we encourage all members to attend our quarterly Community Meetings and participate in decision-making for our community. We strive to work on a consensual basis. We are currently in a partnership ‘residency’ with Willesden Minyan, an egalitarian community in the Willesden area.

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One of our community’s Torah scrolls, which we have had for 20 years, comes from Trebič, Czech Republic and dates from the 19th century. We use it for festival and High Holy Days services and for b’nei mitzvot. For many in our community, the scroll has a symbolic importance, attesting to the continued survival and vitality of Jews and Jewish communities around the world. More details about Czech Torah scrolls are available on the Holocaust Memorial Trust’s website.

We publish a monthly email newsletter, including printed copies for those without email access, providing information about our services, events and activities. You are very welcome to come along to any of them. We hope to see you soon!