Worthing students make emotional trip

Worthing College student Elliot Dollner has told of the far-reaching effects of lessons delivered in Auschwitz.

Thursday, 29th December 2016, 1:16 pm
Updated Wednesday, 11th January 2017, 3:49 am
One view of Birkenau, where students from Worthing College visited

Elliot, of First Avenue, Lancing, took part in a college trip to the museum and memorial for the largest Nazi extermination camp of the Second World War.

He said: “Having a Jewish heritage, this was an emotional trip for me as we would be finding out what conditions for the prisoners were like and we would be taking the steps they did all those years ago.”

The students visited three sites – Oswiecim, Auschwitz 1 and Auschwitz Birkenau.

Oswiecim is the town in southern Poland where the camp was located and its Auschwitz Jewish Centre provides an understanding of Jewish culture.

Auschwitz 1 explores the building and expansion of the concentration camp and considers the camp’s functions over its five years.

Birkenau was the largest of the more than 40 camps and sub-camps that made up the Auschwitz complex.

Elliot said: “In the town of Oswiecim, we visited the synagogue and learned how there are no Jewish people left in the town to this day.

“We later moved on to Auschwitz 1, which was the holding place for prisoners.

“On first view of the camp, it was like a town, houses, storage places where prisoners would work and live their lives. However, each room illustrated a story of what conditions were really like for the prisoners.

“I can go into detail of what each room was like and the story they portrayed but the words I use wouldn’t be to scale of the real thing. It is a place that needs to be seen to be truly understood.

“The scale of Auschwitz was further highlighted at Birkenau. This was the main death camp and it was massive.

“Walking through the gates of death, this was a place where 1.5million people came to die. Birkenau was one of the biggest sites I’ve seen - the scale of Birkenau is hard to be represented in words. It’s a place that needs to be witnessed to be believed.”

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