Auschwitz Visit Changed Us, Say Students; Pair Tell of Horror at Seeing Victims' Hair and Personal Possessions

Coventry Evening Telegraph (England), May 22, 2007 | Go to article overview

Auschwitz Visit Changed Us, Say Students; Pair Tell of Horror at Seeing Victims' Hair and Personal Possessions


Byline: By Steve Evans

TWO Nuneaton students have spoken of their sadness and disbelief after a life-changing visit to the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland.

Ian Gough and Matt Crighton were selected to represent Nuneaton's King Edward VI College in a government-funded scheme to educate people about the atrocities of the Holocaust during the Nazi persecution of 1939-1945.

They were accompanied by Zoe Denston, head of religious studies and philosophy at the Nuneaton college, who said: "I feel we have a moral duty to ensure that young people continue to be educated about genocide and the dangers of prejudice and persecution."

An estimated 1.5 million Jewish men, women and children were executed at Auschwitz.

The Nuneaton students were given a conducted tour of the concentration camp, including the one remaining gas chamber and crematorium.

One room on the tour contained seven tonnes of female human hair - the average head holds just 50 grams.

Sixteen-year-old Ian said: "The volume was overwhelming. You could almost smell the lives they'd come from. Such a lack of dignity."

They were also shown rooms containing personal possessions and suitcases still bearing their owners' names. …

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