THE community gathered to ‘stand together’ on Holocaust Memorial Day at a poignant vigil in Uppermill.
Saddleworth Peace Group hosted the event, which was attended by MP Debbie Abrahams, councillors and locals outside the Methodist Church.
The event, which has been held annually by the group since 2001, remembers those killed in the Holocaust as well as many subsequent genocides.
Magda Sachs, from Saddleworth Peace Group, explained the ‘stand together’ theme of this year’s events nationwide, which mark 75 years since the liberation of Auschwitz.
Cllr Jamie Curley, chair of Saddleworth Parish Council, called for more compassion, understanding and humanity throughout society.
He said: “It is unfortunate that we have to be here but we stand together to remember and commemorate the victims and the survivors.
“In today’s world, it is more important than ever that we stand together. It is important that we never forget so that the same things will never be repeated.”
Mrs Abrahams added: “We need to stand together and make sure people are not ‘othered’ as the Jews were.
“It is important we hold all politicians to account in terms of their language and words and actions.
“In the words of my dear friend Jo Cox, we have more in common than that which divides us.”
A silence for held for attendees to reflect and remember victims and survivors.
Then inside the Methodist Church Hall, Oldham Youth Council and Oldham Theatre Workshop gave a performance based on their experiences from a five-day visit to Auschwitz.
The group of about 10 young people reflected on what they had seen and learned about dissonance and how to relate to it in their own society today.
Attendees were each given a purple flame with the words ‘stand together’ on to take away and spread the message.