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Ashkelon honours British Jews

by: Caroline Westbrook - Last updated: 2012-03-31

Tennis in Ashkelon

Tennis in Ashkelon

A festive event in honour of British Jews and their efforts in Ashkelon will take place at the city's Marjorie Sherman Israel Tennis centre on April 10.

The celebration will pay tribute to the scope of investment from British Jews in Ashkelon since the 1970s, with their help and donations funding the building of schools, hospitals and other facilities.

Over 10,000 volunteers and 200 British delegations lived in the city from 1978-1998, with highlights of their time there including a special visit from then prime minister Margaret Thatcher.

The tennis centre playing host to the event was among those projects supported by British Jews in the region.

Originally opened in 1981, it now provides tennis and other fitness schemes for locals as well as hosting tennis tournaments.

The Sherman family, who founded the centre, will also be honoured as a new town junction bearing their name is unveiled.

"Following a 30 year relationship with British Jewry, we are delighted to welcome our dear friends from Great Britain to Ashkelon, to come and see the many accomplishments as a result of the joint work started with project renewal," said Ashkelon mayor Benny Vaknin.

"There has been a real necessity to enhance the education, employment, culture and sports infrastructure in Ashkelon, to accommodate the population which has increased from 46,000 to 128,000 during this period. I am personally thrilled by the cooperation with the ITC in honouring the Sherman Family, as well as many other friends from Great Britain, who are still extremely involved in many of these projects."

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