Marking the 79th anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz and the annual Holocaust Memorial Day (January 27) – Holocaust Centre North is holding an Evening of Commemoration at its base at the University of Huddersfield on Tuesday January 23 from 6.30pm.

Open to the public and free to attend, this annual event run by Holocaust Centre North is dedicated to Holocaust remembrance and brings together survivors, their families, community groups, local schools, the University of Huddersfield and Holocaust Centre North’s team and volunteers to collectively remember the six million Jews killed in the Holocaust and others who suffered under Nazi persecution.

Introduced and led by centre director Alessandro Bucci, who is supported by the University of Huddersfield deputy vice chancellor Tim Thornton, the evening will feature a variety of readings, performances and presentations given by a range of speakers directly or indirectly affected by the atrocities of the Holocaust.

Refugees and artists from 6 million+ will dramatise a poem on the Holocaust Memorial Day theme of the Fragility of Freedom, written collectively by participants from Ukraine, Sudan, Kurdish Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia and those who have Jewish heritage.

A video created by students of Benton Park School will also be shown – reflecting on their own recent interaction with Holocaust Centre North and their studies on Holocaust History.

The event will host Dieudonne Manirakiza who will share his experiences of working in Rwanda after the genocide in 1994, where he brought together victims and perpetrators to encourage reconciliation.

The evening will culminate in the traditional lighting of the six remembrance candles. These will be lit by survivors – Trude Silman, Martin Kapel, Liesel Carter – alongside the Mayor of Kirklees Clr Cahal Burke and a representative of the University of Huddersfield’s Jewish Society – followed by closing words given by Frank Griffiths, honorary life president of the Holocaust Survivors Friendship Association.

Hannah Randall, head of learning at Holocaust Centre North, said: “At a time of increasing anti-semitism and growing Holocaust denial, coupled with the reality that in the next few years there will no longer be first-hand witnesses to the Holocaust alive to tell their stories, it is more important than ever that we shed a spotlight on the risks of baseless hatred in society.

“It’s important that we all come together regardless of our backgrounds and faiths to reflect, to remember the victims of the Holocaust and subsequent genocides, ensuring they are never forgotten.”

Tickets to the Commemoration event at Holocaust Centre North on Tuesday January 23 are free but must be booked in advance via the link HERE. Donations are also welcome.