Board members




I have been attending Menorah for over 25 years and being there with my friends it has become an integral part of my life. I was born and brought up in the Manchester area.     I was married at Menorah to my dear husband Michael who sadly died in 2015. I am a Health and Social Care Consultant specialising in the work of the Court of Protection and I also engaged by several Manchester law firms. I undertake voluntary work with a host of Jewish organisations of all denominations.  Over the years I have been involved in a range of shul activities and I have met and volunteered alongside some wonderful people who have inspired and supported me along the way.                                                        In 2018 I decided to give something back in a more formal way by joining the board. I am often found at Menorah with usually with a pot of tea in hand – please come up and say hello.

I joined Menorah in 2014 and was elected to the Board in 2015. Being new, I agreed to take responsibility for co-ordinating education (including youth activities) at Menorah, not realising quite how massive a task that was!
Having originally been brought up in a modern orthodox context, as only Mancunians know how, I have rediscovered my connection with Jewish life at Menorah alongside my fiancée, Sarah, who converted through the Menorah Access Course.
Although some might insist that my profession as a barrister does make me just a little more outspoken than many, I do hope to receive more feedback, comments and suggestions (be they good, bad or indifferent) from members that can be built upon rather than to plough my own furrow; Menorah is a community for everyone and that, to me, means trying to accommodate as many views and ideas as possible. Please feel free to e-mail me at if you want to discuss or suggest anything (preferably related to Menorah but there’s always room for more)

cotton-pic2DAVID COTTON
David arrived in Manchester in the summer of 1960 ( at the age of 22) for what was supposed to be a 6 Month working assignment.  As a product of the West London synagogue, he naturally sought out Jacksons Row, and plunged immediately into the (mainly social) activities even in those days so typical of the reform movement.  Having Joined Menorah in the “Old Fire Station” era. David first served on Council and was part of the selection group responsible for the appointment of Brian Fox.  After a gap of many years, re joined as a Director in 2013, principally to represent the Choir at Board level, and has also taken on responsibility for liaison with new and joining Members. 

I am a semi retired businessman and grew up locally. Married to Marjorie, we have two adult children, Simon and Fabia, who live down south.
I also qualified as a psychotherapist and do voluntary work with the FED. I enjoy Acting, singing and exploring the North West of England’s towns and country. I have always been involved with Jewish life and  in the past ran youth clubs for Menorah. I believe Menorah to be the hub of a great local Jewish community that it is now my turn to contribute to its on going success.

Simon was brought up at Manchester Reform Synagogue (MRS in Jackson’s Row) and can claim an early leadership role being chairman of the youth club there. Unusually, Simon can claim to be a fourth generation Reform Jew, his great-grandfather Isaac Asher Isaacs was the (paid) secretary of the Manchester Congregation of British Jews (now MRS) over 130 years ago! His parents were founder members of Menorah, so he remembers services at the Friends Meeting House, the ‘fire station’ (part of the now-demolished Sharston Hall), and the previous building on the current site. He left Manchester to go to university and only returned 40 years later!
He works in human resources as an interim manager, sometimes working, on a temporary basis, for weeks or months away from home.
Simon has previously been a Board member for Maidenhead Synagogue and the Jewish Joint Burial Society so is familiar with Jewish communal organisations. He currently advises the Board on human resource matters and plays a vocal role at Board meetings!
Simon is married to Lorna and their daughter, Zoë, is about to move from Glasgow to London. 

kershawLAWRENCE KERSHAW (Hon Treasurer – subscriptions)

Lawrence was born in Manchester and has been a member of the Reform community since he was 7. He celebrated his barmitzvah at Jacksons Row.
He qualified as a Chartered Accountant at 21 and has been in professional practice since. He is married to Janet and has two adult daughters Suzie and Lisa.
Lawrence has rejoined the board, after a 2 year rest, having served for over 10 years previously (6 years as Hon Treasurer)
He enjoys most sports (especially football and Man City) and enjoys travel and puzzles.

Kletz-Robert-cropROBERT KLETZ
I have lived in the north-west since the 1980s and our family joined Menorah in 2002. I have been Menorah’s Board member responsible for synagogue security since 2011. I run a team of enthusiastic volunteers who take turns to be on duty every Shabbat and on all the festivals and also for the wide range of social events that take place at the synagogue throughout the year. I liaise regularly with the Community Security Trust and with Greater Manchester Police, to keep abreast of issues that affect Manchester’s Jewish community in general and Menorah in particular.


ALEX MASIDLOVER Alex joined Menorah over 15 years ago and has been on the security team for most of that time. He took over as security director in 2018. Alex has also taught at cheder and spent a number of years teaching adults hebrew as part of the adult education programme at Menorah. Alex grew up near Nottingham and attended Nottingham Liberal Synagogue; he moved to Manchester to attend UMIST and stayed to start his own software development business.                                                                       Married to Jenny together they have two primary-school age boys; Ben and Reuben.                        Alex fills his remaining time by doing some running, swimming and cycling and assisting with Gatley’s community events.




I was born a true Cockney, but grew up in Canada. I returned to the UK in 1967 to study Optometry at UMIST, where I met my wife, and so stayed in the UK.  I spent forty years as an optometrist and at the same time studied for my M.B.Sc. We joined Menorah in 1978 on moving to Manchester. I joined the shul Council in 1980 and apart from having a couple of years off, I have been on the Board ever since. My wife & I began the cheder PTA/Social Committee in 1981 & I was shul Chairman in the early nineties. I retired from work six years ago and now have time to enjoy children and grandchildren and being Chairman of the Cemetery Committee.

saffer-reubenREUBEN SAFFER
Born and brought up in Hackney, London and moved to Manchester in 1979 when my wife Judith began her social work studies.  Joined Menorah in 1987 when our eldest daughter was 5 and all three children had their bar and bat mitzvahs at Menorah.  Joined the Board eight years ago and worked with the team which developed the new synagogue building. My day work was as a building project manager with housing associations and other charitable bodies where I ran my own practice until December 2014 and still continue with a number of small assignments, some of a voluntary nature.
Menorah is a thriving Jewish community offering a varied range of activities which is why we enjoy being part of it.