Exodus, movement of the people? Stamford Hill families are moving out to an island in Essex

Canvery Island 2013 © David.Altheer@gmail.com
Canvey13: Canvery Island 2013 © David.Altheer@gmail.com
The magnificent vistas around the island impress a tourist from London

StamfordHill0212b: H/Charedi orthodox Jew by Stamford Hill London N16 110715 © david.altheer@gmail.com

ORTHODOX JEWISH FAMILIES are leaving the noisy busy north London suburb of Stamford Hill for the tranquil haven of Canvey Island in Essex.

At least one family has taken up residence, six or seven hope to move there by the end of this month August 2016 and others are approaching islanders with above-market-price offers.

The disused council-owned Castle View School has been sold for almost £2 million to be converted to a private school run by the ultra-orthodox group.

The Haredi (also spelt as Charedi), an ultra-orthodox branch of hasidic Judaism, are finding it difficult to afford to buy or rent homes in Stamford Hill, many of which cost more than £1 million.

The district is said to have Europe’s biggest concentration of orthodox Jews.

Residents of Canvey Island, described by The Guardian as “monocultural”, are publicly responding positively to the new migrants, although some have been surprised by the doorknock requests to buy their houses.

Hasidic Jews at Clapton/Stamford Hill Hackney during Seder/Passover 080415 © DavidAltheer@gmail.com
Hasidic Jews in north Hackney during a religious festival

Dave Blackwell, leader of Canvey Independent Party — motto “Your Island, Your Party” — told Essex newspaper the Daily Gazette that he was happy for Castle View to become a school again rather than a building site for 50 new homes.

Blackwell said that a property developer had withdrawn because of worries about flooding, which on 31 January 1953 killed 58 people and they [the Haredi] are looking to create a large community here.

“I think it’s a good thing.”

Haredi rabbi Abraham Pinter said the rapid population rise in the north London suburb gave young families no choice but too look elsewhere.

He said: “By next year we’ll have another 1,200 [Haredi], and another 1,200 the year after.”

Let us hope they are satisfied with  Canvey’s flood defences. And with the island’s distance from London: 56km.

Hamish Scott 090816

* Backstory: Muslim-Jewish musical

Rabbi Abraham Pinter, left, and Mohammed Sidat of Medina (Clapton) mosque @ Stoke Newington Hackney London N16 070615 © david.altheer@gmail.com
Haredi numbers haver been increasing, says Rabbi Abraham Pinter (shown here with Mohammed Sidat, of Medina mosque)

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