The documentary is 75 minutes in duration and is ideal for family viewing and for education, reference resource and archive. The programme contains live and archive footage, archival still photographs and interviews. The story will be of particular interest to families abroad who can trace the migration of their ancestors on the steamships out of the port of Liverpool.
The story traces the history of the Jewish community in Liverpool, through early businessmen, establishment of a communal infrastructure and synagogues. Russian Pogroms and mass immigration. Settlement in the Brownlow Hill area. Tradesmen and shop keepers. The move from the city to the suburbs. Service to the community at large; The Zionist ideal and some of the pioneers. The decline of todays community. A look into the future. The film name drops some of the Liverpool Jewish Community's famous sons and daughters who have gone on to excel nationally and internationally in the fields of medicine, politics, business, science, the arts and entertainment.
The film was made to coincide with Liverpool's celebration as European Capital of Culture in 2008, Liverpool's 800th birthday and the anniversary of the first settlement of Jews in the UK.
Michael Swerdlow was born in Liverpool in 1943. His maternal grandfather was born in London to a family already established in London in the mid 1800s but his paternal great grandparents came over with their children from Kiev in Russia in the early 1900s and settled in Liverpool. When Michael left school in 1959 he wanted to pursue his hobby of cinematography, however he found the industry was mostly London based and very much a closed shop. After wearing out some shoe leather unsuccessfully seeking work in the film and television production companies of London, he returned to Liverpool to join the family business which supplied catering equipment to hotels, restaurants, industrial cafeteria and caterers around the country. Over a 36 year career he helped turn the business into one of the most successful of its type in the UK and during that time produced a number of videos promoting the company and its products. Sadly at the onset of the global recession in 1990 the company had to close down and Michael decided to turn his hobby into a change of career producing corporate, marketing and training videos promoting other companies. www.swerdlow.co.uk While finding his niche in this field he has also produced several documentaries on a range of subjects. Chicken Soup and Scouse is his most adventurous project to date and follows his enthusiasm for the Liverpool Jewish Community where he served for four years as chairman of Harold House Youth Club and six years as the Chairman of the Liverpool Jewish Youth and Community Centre, Harold House.
Arnold Lewis was born in Liverpool in 1942. His grand parents came to Liverpool from Eastern Europe in the late 1800s. He is a retired communications network manager and now spends his time as a voluntary communal worker as well as being the Liverpool Jewish Community Archivist. He is also Chairman of the Liverpool branch of the Jewish Historical Society of England. In 2012 Arnold was elected as President of the Merseyside Jewish Representative Council which represents the community in civic, cultural and other matters. Another area of Arnold's expertise and on which he gives occasional illustrated talks is the history of Lewis's Departmental Store and its founder David Lewis Levy (no relation). Arnold is a bibliophile and Scrabble addict.