‘A Place on Earth – The Auschwitz Album’

Photograph from ‘The Auschwitz Album’ : courtesy Yad Vashem, Israel

This exhibition is now on view next to the permanent exhibition  “From Auschwitz to Ambleside”  from now until the end of November.

‘A Place on Earth’ at Lake District Holocaust Project in Windermere is from Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Centre, and tells the background story to a photograph album that shows in detail the arrival of a transport of Jews to Auschwitz-Birkenau.  It is the first time this has been exhibited in the UK.

Many of the children and youngsters who came to the Lake District in the summer of 1945 had passed through Auschwitz at some point in their horrific journey through the Holocaust so this exhibition is of great significance to the Lake District Holocaust Project.

The photos in the album were taken at the end of May or beginning of June 1944 by Nazi officials.

The photos show the arrival of Hungarian Jews in the summer 1944. For this purpose a special rail line had been extended from the railway station outside the camp to a ramp inside Auschwitz Birkenau itself. Many of the photos in the album were taken on the ramp and also show aspects of the selection process.

Those considered fit for work were sent into the camp, where they were registered, deloused and distributed to the barracks. The rest were sent to the gas chambers.

This exhibition offers some explanation and context for The Auschwitz Album, which is the only surviving visual evidence of the process leading to mass murder at Auschwitz-Birkenau. The album is a unique document and was donated to Yad Vashem by Lilly Jacob-Zelmanovic Meier in 1980.

It is assumed that the album was prepared as an official reference for a higher authority, as were photo albums from other concentration camps.

Photograph from the ‘The Auschwitz Album’ : courtesy Yad Vashem, Israel


B’s Buttons – A Holocaust Memorial Project at the Lakes School, Troutbeck Bridge

Next Counting Day at the Lakes School – Sunday July 15 2019 – 10am to 3.30pm

The Lakes School in Troutbeck are looking for volunteers to count the many hundreds of thousands of buttons they have received – the running total of buttons to date will be announced at the count.

Students at the Lakes School are currently working on a Holocaust Memorial Project.  The school is built on the site of the former Calgarth Estate, where the children arrived in 1945.

A Year 10 student came up with the idea of collecting buttons. She perceptively noted that buttons are all different and individual, just like the people who were killed in such awful circumstances.  ‘B’ felt that a memorial should recognise this individuality.

The students eventually decided to collect one and a half million buttons to reflect the children who perished in the Holocaust.  So far nearly 800,000 buttons have been sent with many from around the World but more are still needed.

If you have any spare buttons do please send them to The Lakes School, Windermere, Cumbria LA23 1HW, United Kingdom.



Holocaust Memorial Day 27 January 2018

50 counting volunteers, including students, local councillors, members of the Lakes School Governing Body, representatives from the LDHP, Tim Farron MP, and members of the public from the local area gathered at the Lakes School to take part in counting the buttons.  By the end of the day 180,500 buttons had been counted!  Many thanks to all concerned.


Counting Buttons at the Lakes School

Laura Oram, Teacher & Robbie Gontarz, son of Holocaust Survivor

Laura Oram, Teacher with Robbie Gontarz, son of Holocaust Survivor

Tim Farron MP