Harpenden Holocaust survivor turns 90

In 2003 she received an OBE for her work on Holocaust education.

In 2003 she received an OBE for her work on Holocaust education. - Credit: Archant

A Holocaust survivor who spent 18 months in a Nazi concentration camp has celebrated her 90th birthday.

Kitty Hart-Moxon, who lives in Harpenden, has spent most of her life telling the story of how she was placed in a death camp in 1943 in a bid to educate other generations about the horrors of the Holocaust.

She turned 90 on December 1, and will be celebrating with a visit to the Palace of Westminster this week.

Kitty was just 12 when the Germans invaded her hometown of Bielsko in Poland and as a result, her family fled to the city of Lublin. However, within weeks the Nazis occupied the city and everyone who was registered as a Jew was forced into a ghetto. Kitty and her mother managed to obtain some non-Jewish documents from a priest and enter Germany, only for their true identity to be discovered. As a result, the pair was put on trial and found guilty of entering the country illegally with documents that did not belong to them.

Instead of receiving the death penalty, they were sentenced to Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp where Kitty’s jobs included digging ditches, working in the latrines and sorted through the clothes of murdered victims.

After being transferred to another camp, she and her mother were liberated by Americans in 1945 and later received permits to settle in the UK.

Thirty of her relatives died during the Holocaust, including her father, grandmother and brother.

Most Read

Since her ordeal, she has published two books and filmed the documentary, Return to Auschwitz, which focuses on her experiences in the camp. She was also invited to the Buckingham Palace Garden Party in 2013 after being put forward by the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust for her services to the charity.

As part of her birthday, she will be visiting the House of Commons on December 7, and will also get to sit in on Prime Minister’s Questions.

Kitty said: “We will also be doing the Christmas decorations and having a bit of a buffet lunch.

“I was supposed to have a party but couldn’t find a venue when I needed it, but I will be celebrating with the family.”

Kitty added that she still does “a lot of work in the schools” and “could do a lot more if she had the energy”.