Holocaust Memorial Day 2021

Purple candle flame. Text reads Holocaust Memorial Day 27 1

Holocaust Memorial Day takes place every year on 27 January, a date which marks the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi death camp. It is a day for remembering all those who have died in genocides, including the 6 million Jews murdered during the Holocaust and millions of others who died during the Nazi persecution and in genocides that followed in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

In previous years we have shared in the commemoration in person, including taking groups from local schools to the City Council’s HMD Memorial Service. This year it is of course not possible to do this, but it is still important to commemorate the day, and the theme for this year, Be the Light in the Darkness, has perhaps taken on a new relevance.

If you want to share in the Greater Manchester HMD service, it is being shared live on Facebook at 10 am on 27 January. As part of the event there will be a candle-lighting, and those watching online will be encouraged to light their own candles.

Purple candle flame. Text reads Holocaust Memorial Day 27 1

We want to be a light in the darkness, and to share that light. Join with us in lighting a candle on 27 January. Share a photograph with us of you and your lit candle (or just the candle if you’re camera-shy) and share one sentence about what ‘Be the light in the darkness’ means to you – perhaps there is a person who you feel is/was a light in the darkness, or an action you and others could do to light a dark situation. If you post the photograph to Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, please tag us (@AIUCentre) and use the hashtags #BeTheLightHMD and #BeTheLightInTheDarkness. For inspiration, you could watch or read some of the stories on the Holocaust Day Memorial site – here are some of them:




There are many other resources on the site, including suggestions for poetry writing activities and some powerful poetry.



On 28 January our friends at Manchester Jewish Museum will be sharing a film of the work of 9 young people from King David High School who have been uncovering stories from the Museum’s archives, their own family histories and from speaking to Cheetham Hill residents, and creating art based on those stories.


Other resources

Access to the books in our library, which include memoirs, histories and essays on the Holocaust, is currently very limited, though it is possible to use click and collect – library information for Manchester libraries is here: https://secure.manchester.gov.uk/info/200062/libraries/8031/using_libraries_during_lockdown

Other useful resources around Holocaust Memorial Day can be found at: