“Last generation” hears first-hand account of Holocaust

Year 9 students listened to the dignified account of one woman’s experiences in Auschwitz, at a talk organised through the Holocaust Educational Trust.

Mrs Freda Wineman, who grew up a French Jew, gave a harrowing account of how her family was rounded-up and deported to the concentration camp. On arrival, her mother and younger brother, Marcel, were sent straight to the gas chambers, whilst she was allotted to a forced labour gang. Her head was shaved and her arm tattooed and she was set to digging ditches. 

She spoke of the touches of humanity and defiance that kept her spirit from being broken. She remembered, too, the Hungarian women who gave her their bread and tried to smuggle clothes to those prisoners working outside the camp in freezing conditions.

The talk was organised by History teacher Helen MacGregor, who said: “Mrs Wineman told the boys that she continues to relive her distressing experiences due to her unwavering sense of determination to bear witness to injustice and to prevent such evil ever happening again.

“It was a special day for Year 9 as they gained a valuable insight into one of the most horrific episodes in history and an understanding of human nature. The boys appreciated that they are the last generation to be able to hear the first-hand accounts of survivors of the Holocaust.”