22 July 2019

On Friday 19 July, students were invited to attend a talk by Trude Silman, a Jewish refugee who came to England to escape the Nazis in 1939. Trude was just 9 years old and lived with her family in Bratislava in Czechoslovakia when the Nazis invaded in 1939. She remembers her teacher telling all of the children at her Jewish school to go home quickly as German tanks appeared on the streets. A couple of weeks later she fled Czechoslovakia with her aunt who had managed to get a job as a servant to a wealthy couple in London, leaving her parents behind. They travelled through Nazi Germany and eventually ended up in Britain, where Trude was found a place to stay with a couple in Newcastle by the Kinder transport program. Both of her parents were murdered in the holocaust, and she never saw them again after leaving her home.
Despite this being the final Friday of term, over 100 students packed out the library after school to hear Trude’s story. The event launched the 2020 Guiseley ‘History Summer Challenge’, where students will be asked to look into personal experiences of their own friends and family to produce a piece of work on ‘History Witnesses’, which will hopefully be shown on Year 6 open evening.