Forthcoming Exhibition – ‘Minia’ – Trevor Avery : 24 May to 3 August 2019
A personal reflection by the artist on the life of a remarkable woman who was one of the Windermere Holocaust Survivors.
Prague – recreation of iconic photograph
LDHP were delighted to be invited by the 45 Aid Society to visit Prague and to participate in the recreation of a photograph taken in August 1945.
This was one of three photographs taken of the children before they were flown from Prague to Crosby-in-Eden. The photograph was taken in front of the memorial in the Old Town Square and over 240 Survivors, 2nd, 3rd and 4th generation children took part. These included families from both the child Holocaust Survivors who arrived in the Lake District and those from the remaining children who were flown to Southampton and to Northern Ireland in 1945.
Amongst the group of participants who attended were Sir Ben Helfgott, Sam Freiman, Sam Laskier, Icek Alterman and Arek Hersh and who stayed in the Hostels on the Calgarth Estate in 1945. It was an extremely moving and emotional event and particularly when the group started singing in Hebrew and Yiddish as these were the songs their mothers and fathers would have sung.
After the photograph the group travelled to Theresienstadt for a memorial service. This was the concentration camp that many of the Windermere Children had been liberated by the Russians in May 1945.
Flight Engineer Reunited with child Holocaust Survivors
On May 6 the 45 Aid Society invited Norman Shepherd to the annual reunion in London. He was delighted to be reunited with some of the children that he first met and transported on their journey from Prague to Carlisle and, as on the original journey, he presented them all with a bar of chocolate.
Meeting with Tony Robinson at Ethel Hedley Hospital, Calgarth
Above and Below the Holocaust Landscape
The Lake District Holocaust Project has received a major award of £48,000 from Arts Council England. The two year project titled “Above and Below the Holocaust Landscape” will involve exhibitions in 2019 and 2020 by artists Richard Kolker, Richard White and Lorna Brunstein, and Miroslaw Balka.
These exhibitions coincide with archaeological activities at the former site of Calgarth Estate near Windermere and will explore psychogeographical connections between this Calgarth in the Lake District and its links to locations elsewhere connected to the Holocaust, including Auschwitz and Treblinka.
A long but fortuitous trail, assisted by a descendant of Oswald Short (Short’s Brothers), led to a meeting with Norman Shepherd, the only surviving member of the squadron who met and transported the child Holocaust Survivors from Prague to Crosby-in-Eden near Carlisle. Norman, the Flight Engineer, distinctly remembered the children and recounted stories of the flight. LDHP had previously sourced the documents from the registration numbers on the planes and were able to trace the squadron number and many other details.
Reach Over The Wall
Another Space, which produces and manages the Lake District Holocaust Project, has been awarded £9942 towards a unique project that will involve young people in a film project based in and around Windermere.
Visit to Windermere School
The Lake District Holocaust Project were invited to the Windermere School windermereschool.co.uk/ to hear a conversation between Trevor Avery, Sam Gontarz and his son Robbie. There were many questions from the floor, from invited guests and students of all ages. Sam is a Holocaust Survivor and was at many camps including Auschwitz-Birkenau and Mauthausen.
Holocaust Memorial Day
Trevor Avery represented the LDHP at an event at Victoria Hall, Westminster on Sunday 27th January to commemorate HMD.
Random Access Memory – Miroslaw Balka, White Cube, London
Trevor Avery and Rose Smith were invited to the preview of Miroslaw Balka’s exhibition at White Cube, Mason’s Yard, London. “Both spaces of the gallery have been sliced in two by enormous sheets of heated corrugated iron…..you can’t walk round them or see over the gaps at the top…you’re penned in or maybe kept out.
Balka’s radiators are border walls and prison fences….there are millions of stories here, millions of chunks of history rippling out like waves of heat” (Time Out, London)
The Holocaust Button – 31 January to 30 April 2019
Of the millions of buttons the Lakes School received during the last year (B’s Buttons), 12000 will be placed in a special display and exhibition to coincide with Holocaust Memorial Day 2019. (12,000 represent both a very small fraction of those who died in the Holocaust and of the number of buttons received by the school).
They will be exhibited in the gallery adjacent to the Lake District Holocaust Project’s permanent exhibition ‘From Auschwitz to Ambleside’ on the first floor at Windermere Library from 31st January to 30 April 2019.
Included will be a few of the comments from some of the remarkable letters that accompanied the buttons as they arrived from around the world and will be specially printed to mount on the walls. These will shine a light on the incredible emotional context and reasons why the buttons were sent; many of the letters and buttons came from Survivors, Kindertransport children, and their families, and include those from relatives of soldiers who landed on D Day and who had liberated Belsen.
Lake District Holocaust Project wins Heritage Lottery Fund support for archaeology dig at emotional WW2 site.
Another Space, which produces and manages the Lake District Holocaust Project, has received a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) as part of a project to carry out an archaeological survey and dig at the site of Calgarth Estate, a unique historical Second World War location with a dramatic link to the Holocaust. It was home to three hundred Jewish child Holocaust Survivors on their arrival in the Lake District in 1945.
The survey and dig will be carried out at the Lakes School in the summer of 2019. The school stands on the former site of the wartime workers housing scheme of Calgarth Estate. The estate was originally built in 1942 to house workers at the nearby Short Sunderland “Flying Boat” factory at White Cross Bay, and was gradually demolished over time until it finally disappeared in the mid 1960’s.
The survey and dig will take place over the summer and autumn of 2019 and will see wide ranging opportunities for people to work closely with one of the country’s leading archaeologists. There are great opportunities to get involved as volunteers to learn about all aspects of excavation, conservation, and exhibition work.
The archaeology will be led by world renowned archaeologists Caroline Sturdy Colls and Kevin Colls, and will include a cutting edge technological survey to identify what remains of the estate lie hidden below ground. This will be followed by excavations that will focus on uncovering the remains of hostel accommodation on the estate that slept single workers from the factory.
Caroline Sturdy Colls is an acknowledged expert in her field and is Professor of Conflict Archaeology and Genocide Investigation at Staffordshire University. She completed the very first archaeological surveys of the former extermination camp at Treblinka (Poland), the sites linked to the Nazi slave labour programme in Alderney (the Channel Islands), and sites in Serbia. Kevin Colls is the lead Archaeological Project Manager at the Centre for Archaeology at Staffordshire University and has directed and published archaeological projects throughout the United Kingdom and Europe. He has 20 years’ experience in research and professional development-led archaeology and his specialist subjects include archaeological field techniques, urban archaeology and forensic archaeology.
Calgarth Estate stood from 1942 to around 1964. It was home to two hundred families and three hundred single workers. It had a school, shops, entertainment hall, and laundry. The single storey houses were nicknamed “Shorts Palaces” by the residents and had indoor bathing and central heating facilities, still rare for working class people in the Lake District in the 1940’s. The estate was eventually demolished and Lakes School opened on the site in 1967, and most of the former residents were rehoused on the then newly built Droomer Estate in Windermere.