Northampton to remember the Holocaust next week with ceremony and community event

A short ceremony will take place in the Guildhall courtyard, followed by a larger community event in the Great Hall in the evening.
A short ceremony will take place in the Guildhall courtyard, followed by a larger community event in the Great Hall in the evening.

Holocaust Memorial Day will be marked by Northampton Borough Council on Wednesday, 24 January, with two public events at The Guildhall.

A short ceremony will take place at 12 noon in the Guildhall courtyard, followed by a larger community event in the Great Hall in the evening, at which community groups and dignitaries will deliver a series of readings and performances inspired by this year’s memorial day theme: “The power of words.”

The evening will begin at 6.30pm, with a welcome from the Mayor of Northampton, Councillor Gareth Eales, followed by a programme of music, film, poetry and dance, concluding with the blowing of the Shofar and memorial prayers, led by the Northampton Hebrew Congregation.

Other speakers will include Julian Harrison from the Holocaust Memorial Trust, Northamptonshire Police Chief Inspector Dave Lawson and William Duncan, Chair of the Northampton Inter Faith Forum.

Councillor Anna King, Cabinet Member for Community Engagement and Community Safety said: “These events give us the opportunity to come together to honour survivors, remember the dead and reflect on some difficult questions about prejudice, persecution and suffering.

“It’s also a chance to remember victims of later genocides, including those in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur and reinforce the message that antisemitism and hate crime will not be tolerated.

“People of all ages and backgrounds are welcome to join us at both events to commemorate the day. This year’s theme focuses on the impact of words, and how they can make a difference for both good and evil.”

The events take place ahead of the global Holocaust Memorial Day on 27 January, which also marks the liberation date of the Auschwitz-Birkenau in 1945.

For more information about this event, please call Northampton Borough Council’s Communities and Partnerships team on 01604 838592 or visit https://www.northampton.gov.uk/downloads/file/10163/holocaust-memorial-day-2018-programme to view the full programme.