The Prince of Wales has condemned the rise in hatred directed against the country’s Jewish community saying “antisemitism has no place in society”.

William visited a London synagogue to meet young people representing Jewish students and others helping to combat antisemitism among the next generation to “reassure you all that people do care”.

He also spent a time with Holocaust survivor Renee Salt, 94, and held her hand after she recounted her fears about the rise in hatred and told her: “It must be horrible for all of you worrying about this and I’m sorry it’s got to this…it will get better.”

Cases of antisemitism have been on the rise since the October 7 raids by the Palestinian militant group Hamas killed about 1,200 and saw around 250 people taken hostage.

The Prince of Wales touches the hand of Renee Salt, 94, a Holocaust survivor, during a visit to the Western Marble Arch Synagogue in London (Toby Melville/PA)
The Prince of Wales touches the hand of Renee Salt, 94, a Holocaust survivor, during a visit to the Western Marble Arch Synagogue in London (Toby Melville/PA)

The future king’s visit to the Western Marble Arch Synagogue came after he called for the fighting in the Israel-Hamas war to end “as soon as possible” and increased humanitarian support for Gaza, during a visit last week to the London headquarters of the British Red Cross.

William heard the personal evidence of the young people who spoke about how Jewish students across the country have been affected by the rise of hatred on the streets of Britain which had created a “climate of fear”.

He told them: “Well, you’ve heard it from me, antisemitism has no place in society, you’ve heard that from me OK – I’ve said that before and I’ll say it again.

“And hearing all … your lived experiences both Catherine and I are extremely concerned about the rise in antisemitism that you guys have talked about so eloquently this morning, and I’m just so sorry you’ve had to experience that, it has no place and it shouldn’t happen.

Royal visit to London synagogue
Rabbi Daniel Epstein shows the Prince of Wales a 17th-century Torah scroll as he visits the Western Marble Arch Synagogue in London (Toby Melville/PA)

“So that’s why I’m here today to reassure you all that people do care, people do listen and we can’t let that keep going.”

In 2017 William and Kate visited Stutthof concentration camp and met Holocaust survivors and he told the group of young people: “I think it’s important people go and visit.”

He stressed it gave him an “informed view” about “history” and “culture” but: “A lot live in their silos, in their echo chamber on social media, they don’t have different influences, they don’t have anything else, they might not have anyone they know who’s Jewish…it’s so important we break out of those boxes.”

Among the group of young people were Holocaust Educational Trust ambassadors, who may be non-Jewish but have a commitment to ensuring the Holocaust is never forgotten.

Edward Isaacs, president of the Union of Jewish Students UK and Ireland, told William his organisation represented 9,000 students, adding: “Very sadly since October 7 we’ve truly seen an explosion of antisemitism on campus that we’ve never seen before.

Royal visit to London synagogue
The Prince of Wales sits with young people affected by anti-Semitism, together with Holocaust Educational Trust ambassadors (Toby Melville/PA)

“We’ve seen not only the number of incidents increase but the severity too. We’ve seen Jewish students receive death threats, we’ve seen Jewish students physically assaulted on campus, we’ve seen Jewish property desecrated as well on campus.

“But just because Jewish students haven’t been a victim of antisemitism doesn’t mean you don’t feel the anxiety, because if you haven’t been a victim you know somebody who has been, really sadly, and that creates, and has created, a climate of fear that we’ve never known before.”

Kate was due to join William for the synagogue visit which had been planned to mark Holocaust Memorial Day but she is recovering from an abdominal operation.

Mrs Salt remembered the princess when she spoke with William: “I’m sure if your wife would have been well she would have been here I miss her so much, give her my best wishes.”

She told the prince how she was moved from “ghetto to ghetto” during the Second World War and he expressed his condolences when she said her mother died 12 days after they were liberated from Bergen-Belsen concentration camp by the British Army in 1945.

William suggested it was important those who experienced the Holocaust continued to talk to the next generation, Mrs Salt replied “some of the young people don’t even believe it ever happened.”

Karen Pollock, Holocaust Educational Trust’s chief executive, who joined the royal visit said: “I think it is an extremely powerful message to hear the Prince of Wales say that he stands with the Jewish community and says there’s zero tolerance for this anti-Jewish hate – and he wants to help and he wants to listen.

“The time he gave to these young people, who have experienced antisemitism, and the encouragement he gave to our young ambassadors is something they’ll never forget.”