The National Holocaust Centre and Museum was the brainchild of James and Stephen Smith and mother Marina who in 1991 visited Yad Vashem- Israel’s national Holocaust museum. They believed that their education of the Holocaust had been lacking as there had never been an opportunity to consider what the Holocaust might mean for them as individuals. The trip in 1991 changed the lives of the family as they knew that the Holocaust had to be taught, discussed and understood by all. They were especially keen to see this done correctly for students learning about the Holocaust at school.
After many years of dedicated fundraising, the National Holocaust Centre and Museum was born, the only national museum in the UK dedicated to teaching and learning the lessons from the Holocaust, including education for younger children.
The Centre’s statement of purpose is to provide a permanent memorial to the victims of the Holocaust; offer an understanding of the causes and events of the Holocaust through a range of age-appropriate exhibitions and survivor testimonies and to present programmes of learning, based on the Holocaust, that encourage personal responsibility and the promotion of fairness and justice but also challenge learners to take positive action.