Community life

Belfast remember the Holocaust

By Joe Cohen, January 28, 2010

Ulster Television presenter Paul Clark was master of ceremonies for the Northern Ireland HMD event which was at Belfast City Hall.

More than 400 people attended the event in the presence of the Lord Mayor of Belfast Naomi Long and the Junior Minister Robin Newton.

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North Tyneside: 100 candles for Holocaust Memorial

By Cathy Forman, January 28, 2010

A ceremony in remembrance of the victims of the Holocaust and other genocides took place at North Tyneside's Council Chamber. The event, hosted by the chairman of North Tyneside Council, Councillor Michael Huscroft, Mayor Councillor Linda Arkley and the borough's Holocaust Memorial Committee, culminated in the lighting of 100 candles.

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Police vow to tackle hate crime

January 28, 2010

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson used an HMD meeting to reiterate the Met’s commitment to tackling hate crime.

Addressing a commemoration organised by the Jewish Police Association in Hendon, Sir Paul said: “It is important to recognise that many different groups suffered during the Holocaust. New police recruits here today have learnt as part of their training about prejudice, discrimination, and hate crime.”

The Association of Muslim Police was represented at the event and pupils from the Hasmonean Primary and Independent Jewish schools also attended.

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£100k for Jewish Museum to mark Holocaust Memorial Day

January 28, 2010

Culture Minister Margaret Hodge marked Holocaust Memorial Day by awarding £100,000 grants to London’s Jewish Museum and the Wiener Library.

The museum is set to reopen in March after a major redevelopment project. The library, a key Holocaust resource, is planning a 2011 relocation.

Ms Hodge noted that the recipients “play a vital part in ensuring that people are aware of what the Jewish community have given to this country and the world — and that we never forget the terrible wrongs suffered during the Nazi era”.

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Survivors’ children keep memories alive

By Robyn Rosen, January 28, 2010

Stuart Ferster did not consider his upbringing out of the ordinary. But with hindsight, there was “a lot missing” — and this was down to the 54-year-old’s father, Chaim, having survived concentration camps including Buchenwald and Auschwitz.

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Survivor's Story: Martin Bennett

By Robyn Rosen, January 28, 2010

Martin Bennett, 84, attributes his survival in Auschwitz to his older brother who told him to lie about his age and skills.

Born in 1925 in Izbica Kujawska in Poland, Mr Bennett left his parents and eight siblings when the Nazis invaded in 1939, being sent to the Posnan forced labour camp. He was told that he would be able to work and earn money to send back to his family, so he was happy to go. It was only on arrival that the grim reality dawned.

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Gay groups join Holocaust Memorial in Manchester

By Jonathan Kalmus, January 28, 2010

Involvement in the Manchester HMD commemorations helped the city’s gay and lesbian Jews bridge the “chasm” with the rest of the Jewish community.

They marked HMD with a film event under the banner of Keshet, a local Jewish support organisation.

“It is a really important day in both the gay and Jewish calendars as it is the day where we remember atrocities done to both groups from the same source,” organiser Suzy Schneider pointed out.

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British communities remember the Holocaust

January 28, 2010

Commitment to actions to prevent another Shoah was the focal point of Sunday’s Leeds HMD commemoration, held at the town hall and attended by 300 people.

A drama inspired by artwork by children in the Theresienstadt camp was performed by young members of the Carriageworks theatre group. Survivor Iby Knill read her poem, I Was There, and other speakers included the Lord Mayor, Councillor Judith Elliott.

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Anne Frank Trust goes for the youth vote

January 28, 2010

Student groups used HMD to launch a campaign in conjunction with the Anne Frank Trust to encourage those at college to “vote wisely and reject extremism in the forthcoming general election”.

Both the National Union of Students and UJS are backing the initiative, which Anne Frank Trust director Gillian Walnes said used an updated version of the Anne Frank anti-racist declaration, ending with the phrase: “Don’t just vote — think.” It was sobering to recall that “some of the most enthusiastic supporters of National Socialism were students”.

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Haringey teenagers' Holocaust education

January 28, 2010

Interviews with survivors filmed by six Haringey teenagers were shown at the Bernie Grant Arts Centre in Tottenham.

One of the film-makers, 16-year-old Reece Taylor, said that before embarking on the project, “I didn’t really understand what the Holocaust was, or how it could be of interest to me. While making the films, I realised that these survivors had amazing stories to tell that help remind us of the importance of the past in learning lessons for the future.”

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