A time to reflect as ceremony marks Holocaust Memorial Day in Lowestoft

A ceremony was held at Lowestoft Train Station to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day. Cllr Bruce Pro

A ceremony was held at Lowestoft Train Station to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day. Cllr Bruce Provan, Ray Wang and Cllr Stephen Ardley - Credit: Archant

More than 200 people fell silent to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day in Lowestoft.

People gathered to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day. Pictures: Mick Howes

People gathered to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day. Pictures: Mick Howes - Credit: Archant

A wreath was laid by mayor of Lowestoft Stephen Ardley and Waveney District Council chairman Bruce Provan.

As they addressed the crowds, memories of Lowestoft's role in the 'kindertransport' program, which brought children to the town to escape persecution in Europe, were recalled.

In his speech, Mr Ardley said that: 'We mark this day every year as a day for everyone to pause and remember the millions of people who have been murdered or whose lives have been changed beyond recognition during the Nazi persecution and the subsequent genocides throughout the world.

'The message this year is don't stand by, speak out and stop it at source.'

This was followed by Ray Wang, chair of Waveney Youth Council, also laying a wreath on behalf of all the young people in the town – some of whom were present at the ceremony.

'It is an absolute honour and privilege to be here this morning to pay my respects and also on behalf of all my colleagues at the Waveney Youth Council and the young people in Waveney,' Mr Wang said.

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A moment of reflection and prayers were then lead by Capt. Paul McDonough.

Pupils at Ormiston Denes Academy also paid their respects by streaming the live webcast of Holocaust survivor Rudi Oppenheimer's testimony, organised by The Holocaust Educational Trust.

Julie Durrant, marketing and communications officer, said: 'Our Principal, Peter Marshall, personally presented this week's assemblies that has led to a poignant reflection on both the Holocaust and subsequent genocides.

'Our students have considered carefully how this year's message, 'Don't stand by', has meaning both in the wider context and within our community.'

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Do you have a Lowestoft story? Email: joe.randlesome@archant.co.uk