About Us

Thanet and District Reform Synagogue is a Reform Jewish Community based in Ramsgate, Kent.

From not only our Thanet base of Ramsgate, Margate and Broadstairs but also Canterbury, Herne Bay, Whitstable, Dover, Faversham and Folkestone, we have constituents across Kent and beyond. Our Hebrew name is Etz Chaim (Tree of Life) and we are members of Reform Judaism. We are a thriving, inclusive community with members and friends from a broad range of backgrounds.  We:

  • Hold services every Shabbat and for all Festivals.
  • Have plenty of social events.
  • Support a full range of life events from birth onwards.
  • Have a range of learning opportunities, for both children and adults.
  • Ensure community engagement from inter-faith work to education involvement.
  • Welcome people from a range of backgrounds, no matter what that background is.

TDRS is funded by its members and is run by the synagogue council.  There continues to be close connections with local and national organisations and charities who TDRS engage with and support where possible.

Fine out more about us and what we do below.


TDRS hold regular services though the year.  Shabbat evening services are held every week with morning services are 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month.  We have a full range of High Holy Days and festival survives. If you would like to attend a service, please contact us first.  To find out more about our services go here.


We engage with all elements of Jewish life from birth onwards.  It is important to us that Jewish life is supported by the community both local and beyond. Whether it is the celebration of a Bar/Bat Mitzvah or the comfort in the passing of love ones, we are here for you. Find out more here.


The care and support of our members is extremely important to us. We also care about our community and strive to support and care for people wherever we can. Close links to local charities and organisations have enabled us to fully engage and care for the community at large. Find out more about our community work here.

synagogue Building project

TDRS have undertaken an ambitious and forward thinking building project. Its aim is to not only to update the current facilities but to look to the future. With the project looking to build a new educational annexe, the community's work within the Jewish community, the local broader community, inter-faith working and beyond will further enhance TDRS's reputation as a leading progressive force. Partnering with local groups and experienced professionals, this is truly a project with wonderful possibilities.


Thanet and District Reform Synagogue underpins the work it does with an ethos that ensures a fair, just, ethical, wide-ranging and inclusive approach. We not only work with our members but also with the wider community in order to be the best organisation we can be.

Learning is a lifelong pursuit

Our People

Thanet and District Reform Synagogue is run for and on behalf of its members.  We have a hard working group of people who serve our community and are there to help where possible. Should you with to contact any of them then contact details are here.


Ian Smiler has been the TDRS Chairman for 10 years now and also the synagogues treasurer. Ian has been an integral part of the community for many years and ensures the community is well represented.



Rabbi Cliff Cohen is the rabbi for the community.  He has held the post for many years and has been pivotal in not only ensuring TDRS is a thriving community but also has strong outside links for example with inter-faith groups.


Senior Warden

Godfrey Fischer is President of TDRS and has worked in numerous positions over many years.He remains an crucial part of the community and continues to undertake essential roles within TDRS including taking services.


Tim Spurrier has been our newsletter editor for a number of years now.  He continues to produce the magazine which is published 3 times a year. He also serves on the synagogue council.



Dr Helene Cohen leads our Cheder group. As a professional educator she continues to take a lively, enjoyable club with the help of other TDRS members. She also serves on the synagogue council.


What's On

Sally Roth compiles our events guide and has been an active member of the community for many years. She is also a member of the synagogue council.  Her husband Michael has responsibility for the TDRS website.

Want to visit us?

TDRS is an inclusive and welcoming community. We have regular visitors to our synagogue including groups of school children.  Should you, or your group, wish to visit us, feel free to contact us.