Good afternoon members — as you know, today is Holocaust Memorial Day, marking the 76th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz.
This day is personally meaningful to me because four of my great-grandparents and dozens of other relatives from my Czech-Jewish family were killed in the Holocaust, many at Auschwitz.
Yesterday I had a fascinating conversation with a woman called Judith Wertheimer, who lives in Cheadle and whose mother escaped Nazi persecution and made a new life in Manchester in the 1940s. I recognised a lot of what Judith said about her family from stories about my own — about how difficult it was for her parents to talk about their traumatic pasts in Europe, and how it shaped the family’s life in the decades after.
Thousands of people in Greater Manchester are descended from Jewish refugees who fled here and built a new life — but how did that experience change them? That’s what today’s story is about.
But first, a reminder that we are having a discussion thread in 10…