THURROCK will again be marking International Holocaust Memorial Day on Wednesday, 27 January at the High View Avenue Memorial Gardens in Grays.
The free event is open to all and planned in partnership with Thurrock Faith Matters who will lead prayers. The service will begin at 11am.
As usual, the service will include the laying of white pebbles on the newly refurbished memorial.
In 2014 young people attending the annual service did not think it was right to only lay the pebbles for one day and then put them away for the rest of the year. They raised Â£600 towards building the permanent display which in place now.
East Tilbury stonemasons – Madstone Ltd – donated their skills and sponsorship to complete the memorial which states: “In remembrance of the millions of people killed in the Holocaust and subsequent genocides throughout the world. We honour the survivors from regimes of hatred and challenge ourselves to use the lessons of their experience to inform our lives today.”
This year visitors will be able to use newly surfaced paths – leading from the memorial to the main shelter – following Veolia North Thames Trust’s grant of Â£6,000 towards repairs, installation of disability friendly ramps towards the shelter, and ground work.
Cllr Jane Pothecary, Thurrock Council’s portfolio holder for communities and public protection, said: “Holocaust Day ceremonies are always incredibly moving and remind us all where bullying and discrimination can lead us.
“Thoughtlessly and continuously picking on any small group of people is what created the Holocaust – and genocides before and since – and it is our duty as people living in a free democracy to highlight where we see such acts, whether in our own country or abroad.”
She added: “We know that picking on people because of the colour of their skin is wrong; but so is targeting those with different views, with different gods or who simply sound or look different.
“Holocaust Memorial Day is a time for us to remember that doing nothing led to the horror that was Nazi Germany; doing nothing is never an option.”