Oasis academies sign Pledge to Peace and plant saplings from Hiroshima

PUPILS from four Oasis academies in Oldham have signed the Pledge to Peace and planted saplings that survived the 1945 Hiroshima A-bomb.

Community members from Oasis Hub Oldham alongside staff and students from Oasis Academies Oldham, Leesbrook, and Clarksfield joined local dignitaries to plant the saplings as a symbol of hope and peace.

Andrew Smyth, Oasis Community Hub Leader and Oldham Mayor Councillor Jenny Harrison, hold a plaque explaining the story behind the peace tree planted at Oasis Academy Oldham.
Front row: Left to right: Richard Outram, Secretary of the Oldham Pledge To Peace Forum; Marie Dillon, Principal; Andy Smyth; Mayor Cllr Jenny Harrison; Jane Hughes (Regional Director, OCL); and Craig Dean, Oldham Community Hub Chair
Back row: Community Hub volunteers with students Rahmat Folami, Eve Adedire, Harry Gardner, Millie Powell and Haider Ali Mahmood

Four Oldham Oasis Academies are signatories of the ‘Pledge to Peace’, alongside 24 other local academies, schools and colleges in Oldham who have so far made this commitment.

The Pledge to Peace was launched in the European Parliament in November 2011 to ‘promote a culture of peace across Europe’.

Richard Outram, of the Oldham Pledge to Peace Forum, said: “The trees were grown by Oldham Council staff from seeds given as a gift by the Mayor of Hiroshima to the Mayor of Oldham as a fellow member of the international initiative ‘Mayors for Peace’.

“These seeds came from a gingko tree which survived the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in August 1945 and were first planted at a special ceremony held at Alexandra Park in April 2017 by Japanese hibakusha ladies who had themselves survived that same atomic bombing.”

OA Leesbrook senior pupils Ayo, Khizr, Haafizah and Subhan with OA Clarksfield pupils Nida and Isfa plant a Peace Pledge sapling. They were joined by Oldham Mayor, Cllr Jenny Harrison and members of the Oasis Academies Community Team

Marie Dillon, Principal of Oasis Academy Oldham, added: “This tree symbolises our hope for peace in the school community, our borough, and between the people of the United Kingdom and Japan.

“I know the pupils and staff will cherish and nurture it as it grows into a mighty tree.”

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