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Schoolchildren remember horrors of the Holocaust at moving Ipswich event

PUBLISHED: 19:00 29 January 2020

Students from Northgate High School led the Holocaust memorial day at the University of Suffolk  Picture: CHARLOTTE BOND

Students from Northgate High School led the Holocaust memorial day at the University of Suffolk Picture: CHARLOTTE BOND

Charlotte Bond

Suffolk schoolchildren have united in remembrance of those who died during the Holocaust at a moving ceremony in Ipswich.

Lucy Smith gave a presentation with her fellow classmates from Northgate High School  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNLucy Smith gave a presentation with her fellow classmates from Northgate High School Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Pupils from Northgate High School and St Helen's Primary School joined representatives of different faiths, local councils and police to reflect on the genocide during the Second World War - with this year marking the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau.

This year also marks the 25th anniversary of the genocide in Bosnia - prompting organisers to opt for the theme "standing together" to teach guests why the lessons of the consequences of hatred are just as relevant today.

Among those praised at the event was Frank Bright, 90, who was sent to Auschwitz by the Nazis aged 16 alongside his mother and father. Neither of his parents made it out alive.

Students at Northgate High School had previously interviewed Mr Bright in a bid to continue his story.

Pupils from Northgate High School gave a presentation at the event  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNPupils from Northgate High School gave a presentation at the event Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

The county's history during the war was retold by historian Mike Levy, who shared stories of East Anglian families supporting Kindertransport children, while Beverley Levy of Suffolk Liberal Jewish Community spoke about the work of holocaust survivor Dora Love - who now has an award named after her by the University of Essex.

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Gurmeet Singh Sually, chair of the Ipswich Faith & Community Forum, said: "This event is about bringing our community together to stand against hate and intolerance.

"On this 75-year anniversary of the liberation on Auschwitz, it is important to both look back to the terrible lessons of the past and apply them to our world today.

Xiaomin Chen, Lucy Smith and Jade Kaur from Northgate High School  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNXiaomin Chen, Lucy Smith and Jade Kaur from Northgate High School Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

"That means challenging persecution where we find it and countering the narratives that feed hatred of others."

Officers from Suffolk police victim support spoke about hate crime in Suffolk and the importance of how in the modern day all cases of abuse motivated by race, religion, sexual orientation, disability or gender should be reported.

Deputy mayor Jane Riley said: "The words of the commitment ring true for the injustice we see in the world today.

"There are real dangers and it is through working together in friendship and cooperation that we will overcome them."

Gurmeet Singh Sually and Punna Athwall at the Holocaust Memorial Day event that was held at the University of Suffolk  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNGurmeet Singh Sually and Punna Athwall at the Holocaust Memorial Day event that was held at the University of Suffolk Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

The event closed with a symbolic lighting of a candle during a choir performance by St Helen's Primary School.

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