A RESIDENT has been left horrified after witnessing a group of youngsters give Nazi salutes to a group of Jewish people on Canvey.

The community of Chasidic Jews have started moving to the island from Stamford Hill after being forced out of London by high rents.

They chose Canvey, due to the community spirit and the former Castle View School site which they have bought and will turn into a Jewish school.

Despite a generally warm welcome, there have been some unpleasant anti-Semitic incidents, including a group of youths on bikes performing a Hitler salute.

A woman who witnessed the incident, but asked not to be identified, said: “We have a lovely family of Orthodox Jews living near us.

“The family were outside minding their own business when three kids rode past on scooters - no older than 8/9 yrs old - stopped to take the time to do the Nazi salute.

“How rude and disrespectful. Total scumbags.”

Joel Friedman, a member of the Jewish community posted on social media a response to the incident.

He said: “Every single one of us Orthodox Jews lost numerous relatives during the Holocaust. My grandparents lost the vast majority of their families and barely made it out alive.

“I’ve had plenty of Nazi salute’s and Heil Hitler’s thrown my way over the years and this is what it remind me of my grandfather with whom I was extremely close.

“He lost his wife and five kids in Auschwitz. He remarried after the war, seldom spoke about his horrific past. All we have is a picture of him and family. Their names are inscribed on his grave as a lasting memory.

On the other hand, we are unfortunately so used to such comments and looks etc that we would not consider reporting it. Its the ‘norm’ to go down the road, get hooted at. This is true in most areas, not necessarily just Canvey.

“In the vast majority of cases the perpetrators are teenagers, bored and uneducated if I my say so. Since my move to Canvey just over a year ago, personally I have had little negative experiences. The absolute vast majority are friendly, supportive, accepting and just treat us as equals - which is what we all are.

“I am so proud of Canvey and of its residents, neighbours, shop owners etc - you are all such a friendly bunch and supportive and for this I thank you from the depth of my heart.”