Stoke-on-Trent commemorates 70th anniversary of Auschwitz

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Events were held across Stoke-on-Trent to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz.

Staffordshire University hosted a Holocaust memorial service on its Leek Road campus with the message: “Keep the memory alive.”

The New Vic Theatre put on a performance commemorating the anniversary, while an art exhibition gallery was held in the Uniqube gallery on College Road in Shelton.

Dr Caroline Sturdy Colls, an associate Professor of Forensic Archaeology and Genocide Investigation at the university, said: “Days like this are very much a symbol of collective remembrance, so it is bringing people together, to remember not only the holocaust, but other genocides.

“Holocaust memorial day gives us a very unique opportunity to bring people together from different backgrounds, from shared experiences to talk about things that have happened to them, that happened to their families or just things that effect all of us.”

Auschwitz was responsible for the deaths of more than one million Jews, with around six million dying in total during the Second World War.

The university memorial event was attended by the Lord Mayor of Stoke-on-Trent, Councillor Majid Khan.

He said: “It should be remembered every year and make sure our youngsters are aware of it.

“We need to remember the evil who carried out the massacres.”

The service heard stories read out from the holocaust, with pupils from Ormiston Sir Stanley Matthews Academy giving facts and figures, as well as some accounts of Anne Frank.

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