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01 August 2014

March 1989                Adar Bet 5749
It is with pleasure that I write this Pesach message in this newly-born publication, the Edinburgh Star. I wish to express my personal congratulations to the editor, Eitan Abraham, without whose tenacity of purpose and sincere dedication, the launching of this journal may have remained only a dream.

It was with his vision of creating a ‘Journal for the Edinburgh Jewish Community’, that Rabbi Shalom Shapira wrote these historic words in the first issue of The Edinburgh Star twenty five years ago.

Eitan posed the rhetorical question, ‘why should we have our own journal? He said that there was a need to report the activities that went on; to have an opportunity to voice our opinions on communal issues and to reinforce the importance of our cultural life with articles written by local and non-local authors on Jewish matters of general interest. In June the Jewish Chronicle reported the birth of the Edinburgh Star together with a photograph of 12 enthusiastic committee members.

The Star began its life as a monochrome quarterly that was painfully ‘set’ in the presence of the Editor and without the technological miracles that we now take quite for granted. By issue 3 the look of the Star was already changing and the magazine name, defined on a background of blue, now adorned the front cover. It was also the first time that New Year Greetings were incorporated into the body of the Star. Production was now in two stages; typesetting by the Jewish Echo in Glasgow followed by printing at Christian Salveson Printing Unit in Edinburgh.  

The editions produced by Eitan had a good number of diverse sections. They not only encapsulated the life of the community it represented, but also addressed the more serious nature of life beyond just that.

In March 1990 (issue 5) Eitan accepted the invitation to take up a research collaborative programme and lectureship for a few months in Moscow, Leningrad and Kiev. He delegated, to Ruth Adler, the position of acting editor and by December Ruth took over as the Editor.

From the 8th edition until the present day the magazine has been Art set by Helen McFeely and completed for publication by Meigle Printers Limited in Galasheils. It was during this time a children’s section was introduced in an effort to excite interest in the younger generation; a section of the community that had not really been represented in the journal so far. Sadly this group was either too    

A History of the Edinburgh Star - Researched and written by Judy Gilbert

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