New funding of almost £1m means that the University of Huddersfield will join with the Holocaust Survivors’ Friendship Association to create a major centre for memorialisation of the Holocaust.
The University’s Heritage Quay archive will house the Holocaust Heritage and Learning Centre for the North of England. As a repository for memories and physical artefacts from the large numbers of Holocaust survivors and their families in Yorkshire, it will attract at least 20,000 visitors annually, including school parties. It is expected that the Centre will be open to the public from October 2017.
Plans for the Centre were first revealed in May 2015. They will now go ahead after the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) announced an award of £604,000 to the Leeds-based Holocaust Survivors’ Friendship Association (HSFA). Also, the Pears Foundation has awarded £100,000 and the Association of Jewish Refugees has granted £50,000. Individual donations take the total funding to over £900,000.
The HSFA is chaired by Lilian Black, who is delighted by the HLF announcement. “The legacy of the Holocaust survivors in Yorkshire is now secure and will be made available to pupils, students and the wider community for teaching and learning,” she said.
Ms Black, whose father Eugene survived Nazi persecution and genocide, delivered the 2016 Holocaust Memorial Lecture, which is an annual fixture at the University of Huddersfield.
“There has never been a more important time for us all to work together to combat all forms of persecution,” she said. “The membership of the Association knows only too well where discrimination leads and it is their dearest wish to make sure our past is not our future.”
The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Huddersfield, Professor Bob Cryan, said: “We are delighted to be partners with HSFA in this vitally important project. We look forward to the development of the Learning Centre here at the University to the benefit of children, young people and communities across the North of England and further afield, ensuring learning about the Holocaust for generations to come.”