Over 100 survivors of the Holocaust and survivors of genocide attended a special reception at the State Rooms of The Speaker’s House this lunchtime, ahead of Holocaust Memorial Day on 27 January. The reception, organised by the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, thanked survivors for their contribution to Holocaust commemoration and education.
Speakers included Baroness Williams, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government; Ben Helfgott MBE, Honorary President of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, Olivia Marks-Woldman, Chief Executive of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust; and Mr Speaker himself.
The Speaker of the House of Commons, Rt Hon John Bercow MP, said:
‘I'm delighted to have been able to offer the use of the State Rooms of Speaker's House for a reception to honour survivors of the Holocaust and genocide, ahead of Holocaust Memorial Day next week. Survivors have experienced the worst atrocities known to mankind, yet have retained their own humanity and rebuilt their lives in Britain, contributing so much to our society. Many survivors work tirelessly, and speak about their terrible experiences, in order that everyone in the UK has the opportunity to learn lessons from history. It is a pleasure to be able to welcome survivors to Parliament and thank them for the work they do to advance Holocaust education and commemoration.’
Olivia Marks-Woldman, Chief Executive of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, said:
‘I want to thank Mr Speaker for consenting to the use of his State Rooms for this reception honouring survivors. The wonderful surroundings are a fitting place to acknowledge the huge contribution that survivors of the Holocaust and genocide make towards ensuring Holocaust Memorial Day reaches more and more people each year.’
Top: Rt Hon John Bercow MP, Speaker of the House of Commons, speaks to the reception as Olivia Marks-Woldman looks on.
Bottom: Baroness Williams