St Annes Hebrew Congregation was able to host this year’s Holocaust Memorial Day Service in person after years of virtual services.
The guest speaker was Leah Burman, the daughter of Polish survivor Ziggy Landschaft, and who set up the Northern Holocaust Education Trust. Leah spoke in depth about her father’s harrowing time throughout the holocaust, surviving three concentration camps and forced marches and is the only survivor of his immediate family. Today, aged 98, he lives in Israel and is happily enjoying his life “l’chaim” being his survival motto.
Other speakers included Lorraine Frank from the Anne Frank Trust and students from local schools Hodgson Academy and St Mary’s Catholic School also took part. Fylde Councillor Ed Nash read out a poem he had written specially for the event entitled Let there be Light and Michael Frankel sang a short Yiddish song from the Vilna Ghetto.
Rabbi Bergson recited the memorial prayer Av Harachamin and President Robert Pinkus led the congregation in Kaddish followed by a minute’s silence.
Dignitaries included the High Sheriff of Lancashire Martin Ainscough DL, Mrs Penny DL representing the Lord Lieutenant. Local MPs Cat Smith MP for Fleetwood and Scott Benton MP for Blackpool South together with the Mayors and Mayoresses of Fylde, Blackpool and Wyre and Fylde and Blackpool councillors.
Michelle Morris, Vice President, said: “It was such a moving service and all the more poignant that we could come together once again in person. Leah’s emotional presentation which she backed up with visuals and her father talking, had everyone in the room totally engrossed.”