National Memorial Arboretum to hold service in memory of genocide victims.
Holocaust Memorial Day – Monday 27th January – will be commemorated at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire with a short ceremony in the Millennium Chapel at 10.50am, at which six candles will be lit in remembrance of the six million Jews who lost their lives in the Holocaust.
Visitors to the Arboretum, which is part of the Royal British Legion family of charities, are welcome to attend the short service, which will form part of the Arboretum’s daily act of Remembrance and will include the Holocaust Memorial Day pledge. They can also take the opportunity to visit The Garden of The Innocents where a tree dedicated to diarist Anne Frank, who died in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp aged just fifteen, is situated. Symbolising the taking of a young life, each year her haunting tree has its blossoms removed before they bloom.
Holocaust Memorial Day is commemorated internationally on January 27th each year; the anniversary of the day in 1945 on which the Soviet Army liberated Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi concentration camp. It provides an opportunity for everyone to learn lessons from the Holocaust and subsequent genocides, including Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur and apply them to the present day in order to create a safer future.
The theme for Holocaust Memorial Day 2014 is Journeys. It focuses on how journeys became a part of genocide and how those undertaking such journeys often experienced persecution and terror. There are also many stories of survivors whose journeys brought them to the UK and whose return journeys have been part of the experience of rebuilding their lives: www.hmd.org.uk.