Students were given the opportunity to meet a Holocaust survivor


Annie Roberts

STUDENTS had the privilege of meeting a holocaust survivor as part of this year’s memorial day. 

Arek Hersh gave a talk at Ysgol Eirias on Tuesday, February 7 to pupils from Ysgol y Creuddyn, Rydal Penrhos and Eirias.

The 88-year-old, who also visited Ysgol Aberconwy to speak to all Year 10 and 11’s and sixth formers, recounted his experiences of Nazi rule in Germany and Poland when he spent time in the Lodz ghetto and a number of concentration camps, including Auschwitz.   

Arek lost all his family during the holocaust with the exception of his sister who escaped to Russia and moved to America. 

Ysgol Eirias students with Arek Hersh and his wife Jean

He shared some details of his harrowing experiences, which included his encounter with the infamous Dr Josef Mengele and his participation in the 'death marches' from Auschwitz to Germany at the end of the war.

Supported by his wife Jean, Arek talked about why he feels it is still important to talk about these events today and to talk on behalf of the one and half million Jewish children who did not survive to share their story.

Mr Roche, Head of History at Ysgol Aberconwy said: "To have the honour to be able to listen to Mr Hersh relay his experiences of the Holocaust and then to be able to ask him questions at the end of his talk is something that both pupils and staff will not forget for a very long time."

A spokesperson for Ysgol Eirias said: "We were pleased to welcome students from Ysgol y Creuddyn and Rydal School to the event.

"We would also like to pass on our thanks to Sharn and the Llandudno Holocaust Memorial Committee for continuing to organise and support these events with local schools."

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