Published: Monday, 6th January 2020
Holocaust Memorial Day will be marked in King’s Lynn when the historic Town Hall will again host the annual multi-faith service which will reflect the 2020 theme of Stand Together.
This year marks the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp and the service, which is open to those of any faith or none, will include a reading by the borough mayor Geoff Hipperson, West Norfolk Borough Council deputy leader Elizabeth Nockolds and members of various communities in West Norfolk.
Mayor of King’s Lynn & West Norfolk, Cllr Geoff Hipperson, said: “Sometimes I feel it would be nice to forget the sacrifices and scale of casualties of the First World War, the horrors of the concentration camps of World War Two and many other gruesome historical accounts. However, we owe it to the victims and the brave who fought against these terrible events to remember as accurately as we can.
“Holocaust day marks and remembers the genocide of World War Two, and will hopefully remind us to continue to fight prejudice in all its forms and ensure that such things never happen again.”
The service will be held on Sunday, January 26, at noon - the day before the national memorial date of January 27, chosen as it marked the date when the largest death camp was liberated by allied troops in 1945. Auschwitz-Birkenau saw the murder of more than a million people by the Nazi regime.
The day is also a time to reflect and remember those who have been murdered in subsequent genocides including Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.
Members of West Norfolk’s Jewish, Muslim and Christian communities will take part in the service along with representatives from a number of organisations including the Soroptimists, Access (formerly KLARS) and children from St Martha’s RC school, which will also provide a choir for the event.
Following the service, there will be a short wreath-laying ceremony at the tree in Tower Gardens which was planted for the first national Holocaust Memorial Day in 2001. There will also be refreshments in The Minster which everyone is welcome to enjoy.
The Holocaust threatened the fabric of civilisation and genocide must be resisted every day. The language of hate and prejudice must be challenged by all of us and by standing together we can create a safer future. Discrimination has not ended and there is still much to do, Holocaust Memorial Day is a chance to continue the process.
Each year thousands of activities take place around the UK to mark the date and more information about Holocaust Memorial Day can be found at the website www.hmd.org.uk