Leicester Oral History Archive Collection
Speaker: Holden, Eve, 1924 - , Interviewee, Female,
Speaker: McGrath, J, Interviewer, Male
Summary of interview item: Recalls childhood in Templehof near Berlin in 1920s and 1930s. Describes the effects on her family and other Jewish friends as the Nazis took power, in particular atmosphere at school and disappearance of people. Recalls burning of synagogue and attacks on father's shops. Describes her feelings of despair at the situation, joining a Jewish club and learning about Israel. Describes father's arrest, selling the family house, preparing to emigrate and buying father's release from concentration camp. Mentions other people trying to emigrate. Describes first impressions of arriving in England and living in London. Mentions father's internment and relates what father witnessed in the concentration camp. Mentions the Wargonhous institution that helped refugees. Recalls being evacuated to Leicester with her brother in 1939. Recounts problems faced by a friend in England. Describes feeling accepted at school in Kilburn, London and contact with Jewish Orthodox families, unlike her Liberal Reformist Jewish background. Describes how she learned to speak English. Returns to experience of evacuation in Thistleton near Oakham, Leicestershire, and problems with food and cold. Mentions move to Cottesmore Hall and Jewish refugees from Prague, Czechoslovakia. Describes assimilation into English life, especially tea drinking and attitude of the English. Describes her interest in theatre and the arts through attending Morley College in London. Comments on wanting to find a new orientation. Mentions not being able to take up acting job at the Aldwych Theatre due to no right of domicile. Describes failure of first marriage and second marriage to Jewish -German. Comments with second husband had greater affinity and empathy. Mentions her children, one living in Germany and not having bitterness toward the German people.
Place of birth: Templehof, Germany
Education: Morley College, London
Marital Status: Married, Children:
Location: Town/Place: London
Periods Covered: 1920s, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s
Recording Date: 22/10/1986
Playing time: 1 hr 15 mins
Access Restrictions: Full clearance Item Copyright: EMOHA
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