STUDENTS at William Howard School have visited Auschwitz-Birkenau ahead of Holocaust Memorial Day 2024.

Xander Hall and Fern Miller are sixth-form students at the Brampton secondary school and made the trip to the former Nazi concentration and extermination camp in Oświęcim, Poland.

The visit formed part of the Holocaust Educational Trust's Lessons from Auschwitz project, which also included an orientation seminar and will be followed by a 'next steps' project which will allow Xander and Fern to share their learning experiences with their fellow students. 

Reflecting on the experience, Fern said, "It was interesting to learn how people have responded to the Holocaust.

"I found particular interest in the fact that the Book of Names is missing 2million people who were completely erased from history by the Nazis.

"The overall experience showed me how dehumanised the victims were made to feel, and how many used spiritual resistance to try to preserve their humanity."

Ahead of Holocaust Memorial Day 2024 on Saturday, January 27, Xander and Fern also created a display in William Howard School's foyer which outlines the role of the Holocaust Memorial Trust and aims to raise awareness of genocides.

In addition, this project fell within the school's wider focus on teaching about the Holocaust, with history teacher Mr Campbell delivering a series of assemblies on the subject to students in all year groups. 

Xander said: "It was an incredibly eye-opening experience, which I would recommend to anyone interested in a deep study of the Holocaust to better their understanding."