By Hollie-Rae Merrick
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
PUPILS from across Suffolk united to learn how lessons from the past can help shape the future.
University Campus Suffolk (UCS) and Northgate High School team up to organise the Building Bridges conference for sixth form students from across the county.
Held at UCS’ Waterfront Campus, the event saw students from Northgate and Farlingaye High Schools unite with pupils from Suffolk One to learn from the first hand accounts of Holocaust survivor Frank Bright.
Mr Bright, who is 84 and lives in Martlesham Heath, was just 16-years-old when he spent a week in Auschwitz. Prior to that he lived in a ghetto for 15 months.
“It means a lot for me to be able to tell my story to young people,” he said. “It is important that the understand what has happened in the past and these are things that they can’t really understand just from reading a book.
“I think it is good to give them my account from the horses mouth.”
Mike Dade, a student at Northgate High School, said: “I think it has been a great experience to get all this information from first hand accounts.
“It has really opened my eyes to everything that happened during the Holocaust from hearing from Frank.”
The event allowed students to think about the Holocaust from a number of angles, with presentations also
The conference was held in the build-up to Holocaust Memorial Day which takes place annually on January 27.
The youngsters also heard the story of one of the world’s most famous war correspondents and photographers, told by her son, Tony Penrose and granddaughter, Ami Bouhassane.
Lee Miller was on the front line with the American army. She saw the bombing of St Malo, she was in Paris during the liberation and she was at Dachau concentration camp when the allied troops first arrived. Known for her timeless and gripping photographs, Lee Miller reported on her experiences for Vogue including being billeted in Hitler’s flat in Munich on the day he killed himself.
Ed Packard, lecturer of history at UCS, said the students would take what they learnt from the event and produce a piece of work to help share what they have learnt. Their work will then be submitted for the Dora Love Prize.
Holocaust survivor Dora Love spent must of her life raising awareness of the fact that the attitudes which made the Holocaust possible are still alive.