Many Jewish people and organisations have spoken out against the building of a shopping mall on the land next to Clifford's Tower.
The Tower stands on the site of a horrific massacre of York's Jewish population in 1190. A large group had taken refuge from a violent mob in the then wooden tower. Rather than perish at the hands of the mob that awaited them outside, many of the Jews took their own lives, others died in the flames, and those who finally surrendered were murdered.
Today, Clifford's Tower stands as a potent reminder of religious and racial intolerance - an educative force in an unstable world.
To build a shopping mall on the site of the massacre seems an ugly and insensitive act. Can we accept this proposal? No. We should accept it no more than we would accept the building of a shopping mall on the grounds of the concentration camps of Eastern Europe.
The Board of Deputies of British Jews has taken a stand against the proposal to build on this site. Read the statement by the Board of Deputies.
The following statement from the official body of The Union of Jewish Students shows the dissatisfaction at the proposal to build a Shopping Centre close to the vicinity of Clifford's Tower:-
century massacre of the Jewish population of York, which took place at
Clifford's Tower, is of huge significance to Jewish Students and the wider
Jewish community. The Tower itself represents the occurrence and through
education keeps alive the lessons to be learnt through this tragic incident.
Many Jewish people around the world wrote to the UK Planning Inspectorate to ask the Inspector to stop this development. You too can help us in several ways.