Wednesday, 13 May, 2015

Holocaust survivors met Her Majesty the Queen at Royal Garden Parties at Buckingham Palace during a significant anniversary year.

Yesterday Holocaust survivors and refugees were the guests of Her Majesty The Queen at a Royal Garden Party at Buckingham Palace in honour of their contributions to Holocaust commemoration in the UK.

Two survivors, Susan Pollack and Cirla Lewis, met personally with Her Majesty, who is Patron of Holocaust Memorial Day Trust.

Cirla Lewis was hidden by Catholics in Ghent during the Holocaust, along with her mother and aunts. Her father and grandparents were murdered at Auschwitz. Cirla said,

‘It was an honour to visit Buckingham Palace to meet Her Majesty The Queen and tell her about my personal story as a hidden child during the Holocaust. What a marvellous country we live in.’

Survivor of Auschwitz Susan Pollack said,

‘I was very privileged to have met Her Majesty The Queen who listened to my personal story with such understanding and empathy. The beauty of the house and the gardens was amazing.’

Joan Salter, a child survivor of the Holocaust said the day made her reflect on the experiences endured by her family and all those who did not survive;

'It was a special day and an honour to be included in the guest list at the palace. As always on these special occasions my thoughts turn to my family and of all we endured and of those who did not survive. They walked with me in the sunshine this afternoon.'

Holocaust survivors share their personal stories of survival on Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD), and throughout the year, to inform everyone about the Holocaust and the dangers of hatred today. 2015 is the 70th anniversary of the end of the Holocaust.

The Holocaust Memorial Day Trust was asked to nominate survivors to attend the Garden Parties in recognition of their extensive support of Holocaust commemoration and education.

Olivia Marks-Woldman, Chief Executive of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, said:

‘Survivors of the Holocaust work tirelessly to ensure that thousands of people have a better understanding of the events of the Holocaust. Her Majesty The Queen is Patron of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, so we are delighted that Her Majesty extended invitations to survivors to attend Buckingham Palace in recognition of their important work’.

Earlier this year, on Holocaust Memorial Day, Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall showed their commitment to keeping the memory of the Holocaust alive by attending the UK Commemorative Event in Westminster