Immersive UK digital map of people’s stones painted for UK Holocaust Memorial launches

Of over 10,000 Foundation Stones painted for our UK Holocaust Memorial in London by members of the public to date, 28 stones with stories have been chosen to feature on an immersive map. The Foundation Stones Map allows people to explore the stones in 3D in locations across the country and listen to the stories behind them narrated by award winning actor Juliet Stevenson.

From a whole village in Norfolk coming together to paint 150 stones to a 98-year-old woman in London paying tribute to her mother murdered in Auschwitz, the trail winds its way to London where the UK Holocaust Memorial and Learning Centre will be built. People can turn the 3D stones to see all around them and listen to the stories and words of the people who painted them.

Lord Pickles, Co-Chair of the UK Holocaust Memorial Foundation, said:

Every stone on this trail has a story or message for our new UK Holocaust Memorial in London. We’re incredibly moved and proud that people from across the UK are supporting the Memorial, not only in their hearts but with their hands through painting stones which will become part of the memorial as it is built. We are truly building a national memorial together.

Ed Balls, Co-Chair of the UK Holocaust Memorial Foundation, adds:

By exploring the trail, you discover the British public’s emotional connections to the history of the Holocaust, from families lost to the resilience of survivors. The Holocaust is part of the British story. Discover connections to liberators, aid workers and campaigners in communities up and down the country.

The Foundation Stones Map is part of the Foundation Stones project, run by community engagement organisation Big Ideas in partnership with the UK Holocaust Memorial Foundation. Inspired by the Jewish custom of placing stones on graves and headstones, every stone will become part of the Memorial and is a promise to remember the past and build a future free from hate.

The Foundation Stones Map has been made possible with the support of Google.org. The first trail ‘The British Story’ launches today. A subsequent trail called ‘A Future Free From Hate’ with a focus on subsequent genocides and standing up against all forms of discrimination will be released later in the year.

Rowan Barnett, Head of Google.org, Europe, Middle East & Africa, said:

The story of so many families, including my own, is intertwined with the history of the Holocaust. We all have a shared responsibility to promote Holocaust remembrance, and it’s vital that we work together with governments and civil society to do that, as well as striving to combat antisemitism and ensuring a future free from hate. That’s why Google.org is delighted to support the Foundation Stones project.

Foundation Stones invites everyone to paint a stone for the UK Holocaust Memorial and Learning Centre to remember the six million Jewish men, women and children murdered in the Holocaust and all other victims of Nazi persecution. People can also dedicate their stones to those murdered in subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur. People have until Holocaust Memorial Day on 27th January 2023 to take part.

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