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Monday, 18 April 2011

The Anne Frank exhibition at HMP Wellingborough (7th -18th March)

This was a superb event. A long time in planning, and really paid off for all concerned.

Again, all thanks to our prisoner guides, who worked so hard and were so committed to the project. The exhibition itself was situated for 2 weeks in the Chapel and adjoining areas, and was visited by fellow inmates, staff and their families, and also a local school and a college.

A debate on ‘Freedoms and responsibilities’, was extremely well received, and much thought provoking debate and opinion was heard by prisoners, staff and visitors. This was a great opportunity for people to share their thoughts on a number of topical/controversial issues.

Our guest speaker Mr Freddie Knoller (Holocaust survivor), fascinated the audience with his story of endurance and survival during the Nazi era. No one would have guessed by his energetic performance that day, that he is going to be 90 years young (his words) in April this year. Freddie is an inspiration to us all, and we are extremely grateful to him.

Leah Thorn (spoken word poet) led a very talented group of prisoners in her creative writing workshops which produced some extraordinarily powerful poetry, which was performed at the closing event. This was made especially poignant as families and friends of the prisoners were also invited to join them for this special occasion.

We greatly appreciate the special commendation from the IMB at HMP Wellingborough in recognition of the work we did jointly during this time and the impact that it had. We would like to especially thank Mr Tony Yeomans (Head of Diversity) and Governor Peter Siddons for their whole hearted and unstinting support for this project, and we look forward to working together in the future.

Click here to view a letter of commendation from HMP Wellingborough.


  1. I was serving a sentance at the Prison at this time and was invited to participate as a guide for this exhibition. I'd like to echo the sentiment that the two weeks were indeed a fantastic event and were tremendously well recieved by all the visitors who came along. This included general guests from the local community, some college groups and staff/prisoners themselves. It did (as Gov.Siddons felt too) showcase the prison and demonstrated that prison can offer outside visitors a unique experience of being educated about the holocaust. The guides left each evening and returned to captivity and whilst their conditions are ok, contrasted to the experience of Anne Frank you can be aware of how we too, have little control upon the fate of our lives and thus to visitors we can convey the anne frank history, with personal reflection upon the value of freedom and human rights. I felt that this was a poingont aspect of the delivery, irrespective of your opinion of prisoners.

    I really enjoyed this oppurtunity and thank Gov.Siddons, who for him was a last event before he left. Also personally i'd like to thank my prison education tutor Julie who gave me the passion+interest in WWII history. And i urge the prison to do much much more events like this, not least because it reminds us all of the fortune in freedom we have. tomas foley

  2. I attended a workshop ran by the Anne Frank Trust at HMP Wellingborough as a student from a local university. We discussed sensitive issues and had a fantastic day and gained some valuable experience and felt very welcomed by all at the prison! Great scheme! Thankyou!