A distinguished panel of judges has selected the memorial flame created by students of St Edward’s School, Poole in Dorset, to be part of a national art exhibition to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau. Featuring 75 memorial flames chosen to represent each year since the liberation, the exhibition is set to be unveiled at the UK Ceremony for Holocaust Memorial Day in London, on 27 January 2020.
St Edward’s artwork was selected from a pool of more than 300 groups from across the country who registered to take part in the nationwide competition on a theme of ‘Stand Together’. It was launched by the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust (HMDT) to encourage more people to remember the six million Jews and millions of others murdered during the Holocaust.
Headteacher Michael Antram said, “At St Edward’s, we want our students to have a rich, diverse and developed understanding of issues that go far beyond exams and the workplace. Stand Together was a thought-provoking project through which our students could explore this tragic part of our human history. Our students’ memorial flame is a wonderful reflection of the need to learn from the past and to stand together in peace, tolerance and unity.”
St Edward’s is a successful and distinctive joint Roman Catholic – Church of England Voluntary Aided School, one of only a handful of such schools in England and Wales, which educates more than 1,000 students from the age of 11-18. They have been using resources from Holocaust Memorial Day Trust for the past two years to further educate their students on the Holocaust. The resources have supported whole school assemblies and enabled St Edward’s to consider subsequent genocides and the personal stories of survivors and the families of the victims.
Chief Executive of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, Olivia Marks-Woldman, said, “The project has truly been nationwide and at a time when we know identity-based hostility is increasing, it is heartening to see so many groups and communities come together and pay tribute to victims of the Holocaust in this way. I’d urge everyone to get involved in activities for Holocaust Memorial Day 2020 by visiting hmd.org.uk.”
The ‘75 Memorial Flames’ competition was launched with the creation of a sculpture by artist and survivor of the Holocaust, Maurice Blik, who was liberated from Bergen-Belsen concentration camp as a child. The project is part of a wider programme of events devised by the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust to enable people to take part in Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) and learn from the horrors of genocide.
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