YP Letters: Inspirational lessons of the Kindertransport

From: Coun Tom Leadley, West Ardsley, Wakefield.

Lord Alf Dubs (left) has become a campaign for humanity after becoming a beneficiary of the Kindertransport scheme during the Holocaust because his father was Jewish.

Tales of Kindertransport are always inspiring. They show that in spite of the short-sightedness, even naivety, of many British political leaders of the late 30s, there were many ordinary citizens, by no means all of them Jewish, who had enough clear sight to look across Europe and foresee, however dimly, at least some of the unimaginable horror which as about to befall that continent.

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Because of the passage of time, only the Kinder themselves are likely to speak to newspapers now, but the most remarkable people of all must have been those who did what was needed to rescue them. They were notable not so much for their organisational skills, their ruthlessness in dealing with bureaucracy, raising money, finding sponsorship and arranging transport and accommodation, as for their ability to see that all that urgent activity was so pressingly needed.

Are we now, in some less sinister way, back to the late 30s, led by politicians who cannot see beyond Folkestone harbour or Dover docks, and cannot focus accurately on somewhere as far away as what is now Gdansk, even though many of our industries and services depend in part on the work of its migrant citizens?