Amidst national lockdown, the UK commemorates the Holocaust Memorial Day 2021 virtually. This will be the first fully digital ceremony hosted by the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust.

The theme this year is ‘be the light in the darkness. Very fittingly so, as we crawl through the dark tunnel of this pandemic.

The online event will be streamed from 7 pm to 8 pm. As the ceremony ends, people are encouraged to light a candle and place it safely in their window tonight. The ceremony’s aim is “to remember all those who were murdered for who they were” and to “stand against prejudice and hatred in the world today”, explains the HMD trust.

People are also encouraged to upload a photo of their candle on social media, using the hashtags:

#HolocaustMemorialDay and #LightTheDarkness

The ceremony will be hosted by TV journalist Naga Munchetty.

The Natwest Group will be joining the National commemoration by lighting up purple over 30 of their building across the country.

Every year, those who lost their lives in the Holocaust are remembered and honoured on Holocaust Memorial Day. The day is used to remember the six million Jews who were killed under Nazi persecutions and those who died in subsequent genocides. As well as learning about the past, the day hopes to inspire a better future.

Holocaust Memorial Day Trust encourages remembrance in a world scarred by genocide. We promote and support the international Holocaust Memorial Day, on 27 January. The ceremony is to remember the six million Jews murdered during the Holocaust alongside the millions of other people killed under Nazi Persecution and in genocides that followed in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

27 January also marks the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi death camp.

The HMD trust is set up and funded by the UK Government, of which Prince Charles is patron. PM Boris Johnson has shown his support today at the PMQ by wearing the HMD badge.

Even today in the UK, prejudice and the language of hatred must be challenged by us all.

“Holocaust Memorial Day is a time when we seek to learn the lessons of the past and recognise that genocide does not just take place on its own. It’s a steady process which can begin if discrimination, racism and hatred are not checked and prevented. We’re fortunate here in the UK. We are not at immediate risk of genocide. However, discrimination has not ended, nor has the use of the language of hatred or exclusion. There is still much to do to create a safer future, and HMD is an opportunity to start this process”, explains the organisation.

Online streaming of the ceremony can be watched here.

A full list of events and activities commemorating the day can be found online here