Jewish Edinburgh Now

Being Jewish in Edinburgh

Thinking of coming to Edinburgh? Whether you are considering visiting for a holiday, or coming to work or study here, you may be wondering how easy it is to lead a Jewish life in the city.

The home of Edinburgh Hebrew Congregation is our beautiful synagogue building which was opened in 1932 to accommodate over 1000 members and reconstructed in 1980 to seat 500. While the membership is smaller now the community remains vibrant, organising services (including a communal Seder) and social events throughout the year. Regular services are held on Friday evening, Saturday morning, and Sunday morning; weekday minyanim can be arranged. There is an active Cheder on Sunday mornings. 

The Edinburgh University Jewish Society (J-Soc) is now one of the largest in the UK with over 200 members, supported by a chaplaincy couple based here in Edinburgh.


Kosher bread from London is available in branches of Waitrose supermarkets. Sainsbury’s at Cameron Toll has a wide range of kosher chilled foods and dry goods. Costco at Straiton also has some kosher products including smoked salmon, Chicago hot dogs, felafel and gefilte fish balls.

Glasgow – an hour away by car or train – has a well-stocked kosher delicatessen – Mark’s Deli. Grocery orders (including kosher meat) are delivered to Edinburgh every two weeks and Mark can also provide catering. There is also L’Chaim’s Kosher Restaurant in the grounds of Giffnock Synagogue. They also deliver and can provide outside catering

We run a Lunch Club for our senior members in the Community Centre once a week.

We have a mikveh on the synagogue site for the use of members and visitors. 

Social and Cultural life

The Edinburgh Jewish Literary Society, which was established over 125 years ago, continues to flourish, running a season of talks every year. Many cultural events are also organised by the Edinburgh Jewish Cultural Centre founded in 2018.

During the Edinburgh Festival the synagogue also runs a Festival Open Day welcoming performers and visitors.

The Community Centre Committee hold a variety of events – an annual quiz, a Burns Supper, film nights, pre-Yom Tov coffee mornings, picnics, barbecues and a Chanukah Dinner. We have an active adult education programme including modern Hebrew classes. 

The magazine of the Edinburgh Jewish community is the Edinburgh Star which is editorially independent of EHC and reflects all aspects of Jewish life in the city.