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Holocaust Memorial Day 2014 commemorated at Cornwall Council

L to R: Charlotte Hill, Hannah, Yselkla and Craig, Harvet Kurzfield, John Wood,  David Hampshire , Neil Burden and Harry Blakeley
L to R: Charlotte Hill, Hannah, Yselkla and Craig, Harvet Kurzfield, John Wood, David Hampshire , Neil Burden and Harry Blakeley

Tuesday, January 28, 2014
9:45 AM

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"The passing of time must never be allowed to become an excuse for future generations to choose to forget the horrors that overwhelmed so many"

John Wood - Cornwall Council Chairman

After a prayer was read, David Hampshire, Cornwall Council RE Adviser, introduced a short film made to commemorate Holocaught Memorial Day 2014, which includes the voices of nine young people who visited Auschwitz with their schools.

The film was developed with St Ives School and Richard Lander School, Truro as a result of the visits they made to Auschwitz in 2012. The nine pupils reflect on the horror of the Holocaust and the personal impact that the visit to Auschwitz has had on them. They make a case why more people should visit the sites of the Holocaust and whether we have learned anything from history.

Hannah, Craig and Yselkla from Richard Lander School who took part in the making of the film, attended the event and lit candles in memory of the six million who were killed during the Holocaust and those killed in other genocides from the past and the present. They each gave a moving personal account of the impression left on them by the experience of their visit to Auschwitz including the heart breaking sight of hundreds of shoes taken from victims.

Co-ordinator of the films production, David Hampsire, said: “The process of filming was incredibly moving. It was the detail of the memory that was most profound. One pupil talked about the emotional journey that they had undergone. Hearing from Hannah, Craig and Yselkla today reinforced the impact of their experience in visiting Auschwitz. Perhaps it is only when the emotions are engaged in education that education actually takes place.”

Cornwall Council Chairman John Wood says: “The passing of time must never be allowed to become an excuse for future generations to choose to forget the horrors that overwhelmed so many. It is from history that our young people will learn the importance of mans humanity to man and the consequences of what happens when we lose sight of the sanctity of all human life. Young people constitute our future. Listening to the account of their experiences, these young people capture the true horror and scale of the Holocaust. Such visits show that education can have a profound impact on young people in such a way that they want to change their world for the better.”

John Pollard, Cornwall Council Leader, says: “It is only by understanding the past that we can develop the present. This is so true of the lessons we can learn from the treatment of Jews over the centuries and particularly in the Second World War. The film is impressive in that it shows Cornish young people fully appreciating the horrors that happen in our world and the hope that we can improve in so many ways. I congratulate all involved for producing a very effective piece.”

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