Bloch, Sir Maurice

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BLOCH, SIR MAURICE (1883–1964), Scottish distiller and philanthropist. Born in Dundee, Bloch settled in Glasgow in 1910. He founded a family distilling business and at the same time played an active role in Jewish communal work. In 1937 he was knighted "for political and social services." In 1954 he gave up his large business to devote himself to civic and Jewish communal affairs. He was president of the Board of Guardians, he represented Scotland on the Chief Rabbinate Council and became chairman of the Queen's Park Synagogue. He was keenly interested in Jewish education and was president of the Glasgow yeshivah, made a generous donation in 1956 to Jews' College, London, and set up a trust fund for the Hebrew University. He also gave sizable gifts to Glasgow University and Royal Faculty of Physicians and Surgeons in Glasgow. In 1948 Bloch was involved in the investigations of the Lynskey Tribunal into the conduct of some ministers of the crown. Throughout Bloch denied corruption though admitting to indiscretions. Nevertheless at the end of the trial his name was removed from the list of magistrates in Glasgow where he had been a justice of the peace for 25 years.