Prince Charles tours 150-year old former synagogue in Wales

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Prince Charles tours 150-year old former synagogue in Wales

Heir to the throne made first ever visit to historic shul in Merthyr Tydfil, which is due to be transformed into a Jewish cultural heritage centre

His Royal Highness, Helen Hyde, im Murphy, Michael Mail, and Trustee Stephen Goldman and architect Ashley Davies.
His Royal Highness, Helen Hyde, im Murphy, Michael Mail, and Trustee Stephen Goldman and architect Ashley Davies.

Prince Charles has visited a 150-year old shul that has remained unused for almost 40 years.

The heir to the throne made his first trip to the site in Merthyr Tydfil on 14 May, where he was told about its history as well as plans for the future.

The synagogue was built in the 1870s, and was functioning for over a hundred years, before the community closed in 1983.

The Foundation for Jewish Heritage bought it in 2019 and carried out urgent repairs, with the help of the Welsh government, and now plans to  transform into a Jewish heritage centre.

During his visit, Prince Charles was welcomed by the leaders of the foundation, before being shown its Victorian gothic exterior, delving into its history, and being presented with a lino print of the building.

His Royal Highness, Michael Mail & FJH Trustee the Rt Hon Jim Murphy

Dame Helen, chair of the foundation, said, “it has been a great honour to welcome His Royal Highness to the former synagogue of Merthyr Tydfil.  The synagogue represents a flagship project for the Foundation and we have an exciting vision for the future of the building which we were thrilled to share with The Prince”.

Synagogue building

Michael Mail, its Founder and Chief Executive, said: “Merthyr Tydfil, which was Wales’s largest town in the 19th century, is home to what is the most important historic synagogue building still standing in Wales.

“We have been delighted to host this very special visit of The Prince of Wales, which in itself underscores the significance of the building.  It is a unique Jewish and Welsh heritage site. His Royal Highness was clearly very interested in the project and our future plans for the synagogue.”


Watch a clip of the visit here:

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