Gerda was born in 1926 in Lotzen, East Prussia in 1926. She had a happy childhood, living with her parents and two sisters, Ruth and Mirrel.
Gerda witnessed the rise of antisemitism. One night, two SS men marched into the family home and took her father away. Although he was released from the detention centre shortly afterwards, the experience led Gerda’s parents to make the decision to leave the country.
Her father did not have a birth certificate and was unable to get a travel visa. Not wanting to leave him behind, Gerda’s mother decided to arrange the emigration of Gerda and her two sisters. In June 1938, the three travelled together to England on the Kindertransport, and were sent to Liverpool.
Eventually in 1942, Gerda moved to a refugee hostel in Manchester, and has lived in the city ever since. Over the years, Gerda has been a dressmaker.
She married Nat in 1949 and they went on to have three children, David, Rochelle, and Steven.
“As we were leaving (for the Kindertransport), I picked up my father’s tape measure and asked him if I could have it. I just wanted something of his.”
“From Königsberg, we got on another train through to Danzig, the Polish corridor as it was known, on to Berlin where we stayed the night. The accommodation was next door to the police station, so we had to be very quiet.”
“I knew as soon as I came to this country that I would never go back to Germany. That was the decision I made within 24 hours of living here.”