DURING January, Alsop High School, the largest secondary school
in Liverpool, with 1800 pupils, has been hosting the Anne Frank
Trust exhibition to commemorate the liberation of Auschwitz.
The month-long exhibition is intended to promote respect and
challenge prejudice, and it was declared open by the Bishop of
Liverpool, the Rt Revd Paul Bayes. The Bishop spoke about hope, and
placed a stone inscribed "Hope" from Liverpool Cathedral next to
six lanterns, lit to commemorate the six million Jews who perished
under the Nazi regime.
Also at the ceremony were the RC Auxiliary Bishop of
Liverpool, the Rt Revd Tom Williams; the chairman
of the Merseyside Jewish Council, Ian Cohen; and the Lord Mayor of
Liverpool, Councillor Erica Kemp.
A highlight of the event was when the Head Boy of Alsop, Josh
Ferris, who had visited Auschwitz, introduced 84-year-old Zigi
Shipper (centre), a survivor of the camp. He came from a
Jewish family in Lodz, Poland, and in 1940 he and his grandparents
were forced to move into the Lodz ghetto. He managed to remain
there until 1944, when, as a teenager, he was in a group that was
sent to Auschwitz-Birkenau, and then on to a concentration camp
near Danzig, where people were starving and freezing to death.
The Russians were advancing; so the camp inhabitants were forced
on a death march that, for Mr Shipper, ended in Neustadt, where he
was liberated by the British Army on 3 May 1945. The next year he
came to England, married in 1954, and now has two daughters, six
grandchildren, and a great-grandchild.
Since coming to England, he says, he has had "a wonderful life".
But, he went on, "We must not forget the six million Jews who
perished, and we must not forget the other people who also perished
in the Holocaust. We must never forget, so that it doesn't happen