Published 21st January 2021

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council will once again remember all those who were murdered or affected by the Jewish Holocaust and other genocides on National Holocaust Memorial Day. This year will be a little different and on Tuesday 26 January at 6pm you are invited to join on YouTube and social media our town’s first ever virtual memorial service, to recognise and reflect on National Holocaust Memorial Day. The service will include music, reflections and readings including an address by Mrs Susan Bermange.  The service will be available to view online at this link.

Susan Bermange’s father, Berek “Bob” Obuchowski, was a holocaust survivor and spoke at our service  in Southend in 2011. During the service Susan will speak about his life. He was born in Ozorkow, Poland, spent over three years in the Łódź Ghetto, was transported to the concentration camps at Auschwitz, Buchenwald, Rhemsdorf and finally survived a death march to Thereisenstadt, where he was liberated. He was one of ‘The Boys’ who were brought over to the UK in 1945.  He started his new life here in Windermere. In his words, he went “from hell to paradise”.

On Wednesday 27 January the Council’s Parks Team will be planting a commemorative tree on Marine Parade as part of the Holocaust Memorial service. In line with government guidance there will be no public event on this occasion.

Labour’s Kevin Robinson, Cabinet Member for Business, Culture and Tourism will also speak as part of the service and said: “Holocaust Memorial Day is a nationally recognised day, and we hope many people will join us as we pay tribute to remember loved ones and families of those who suffered so terribly during the Holocaust, as well as other more recent genocides across the world. The council is honoured to commemorate this day, and while this years’ service is an online event we hope it will serve as a poignant reminder for future generations and will help contribute in a small way to raising awareness about, and helping to prevent further persecutions and genocide.”

A national online event is also taking place at 7pm on Wednesday 27 January. Register at

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