This film is part of Free

Soup Kitchen

A rare glimpse inside the Soup Kitchen for the Jewish Poor in the East End during the early 1930s.

Amateur film 1934 4 mins Silent


This 16mm amateur footage was filmed at the Soup Kitchen for the Jewish Poor in London's East End, and is a valuable record of a community almost vanished from this part of the capital. Located in Spitalfields on Butler Street (now Brune Street), where it moved in 1902, the soup kitchen was founded by the Jewish Board of Guardians, set up to assist Jews fleeing persecution in Eastern Europe.

A 1932 appeal for funds in the Jewish Chronicle estimated at least 4000 people visited the soup kitchen nightly during the winter opening hours of 5-7pm, Monday-Thursday; "This food consists of soup and bread on each of these evenings and Kosher margarine and sardines on alternative evenings. In addition, pilchard and an extra portion of bread are given on Thursdays to help the poor over the weekend". It was still feeding elderly clients when it closed in 1992. The building survives today, converted into flats.