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Wednesday 24 January 2024

Local writers help Salisbury to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day 2024

On Saturday 27 January, from 10am at Salisbury Guildhall, representatives from across the Salisbury Community including Councillors, faith leaders, students, local historians and interested members of the public will join people from families with lived history of the Holocaust to remember genocides from across the globe.

This year this important event, coordinated by Salisbury City Council, will include the poems of three local writers, selected from submissions from local residents on the Holocaust Memorial Day theme, “The Fragility of Freedom”. Two poems in the 18+ Category, by Cassandra Hill and Alison Bailey and one from the 11 – 17 category, by Grace Vickers (of South Wilts Grammar School) were chosen by a varied panel and will be read at the event this weekend.

Holocaust Memorial Day is a moment for local people to remember, reflect and increase understanding of the impacts of genocide across generations and borders. The City Council hosts the event, but it is essential that it is for and from the whole community.

Salisbury City Council is delighted that these creative and thoughtful writers have shared their work with the city to help find words to reflect on this difficult topic and to aid the city in joining the Holocaust memorial Day Trust in its mission to “Learn from Genocide – for a better future”.

All attendees of the event will be invited by the City Council to sign a memorial book, which will be opened annually on Holocaust Memorial Day. The book will be open for the public to sign after the event from 1pm – 5pm on Saturday 27th January.

Our 11 to 17 selected poem is shared here to help those unable to attend the event reflect on the themes and ideas.

When we think back to the Holocaust,
We remember all the pain it caused,
The people that died,
The families that cried,
Many living in fear for not having blue eyes,
Why can this one man decide?
Gas chamber or slavery?
Live or die?
Even after they were finally set free,
Innocent people suffered from PTSD,
Constantly reminded of those men,
Terribly traumatised from what happened back then,
Even if you think you aren’t in danger,
One person can come along and everything changes.

(Grace Vickers)