On August the 15th 1947, 104 miners lost their lives in a pit explosion at the William Pit coal mine in Whitehaven, Cumbria. On the 27th of September, Evžen Erban, Secretary General of the Czechoslovakian Central Council of Trade Unions, announced a proposal for a Czechoslovak supported miners’ recreation home in Britain in commemoration of the victims. The scheme was reminiscent of the Lidice Shall Live campaign.
On Thursday, July the 15th, 1954 from offices in Westminster, Dr Barnett Stross launched a public appeal for funds to purchase rose trees for a Lidice International Garden of Peace and Friendship.
It was Thursday, the 10th of July, and the audience with Marshal Stalin had been arranged for 9.30am. Masaryk and Drtina met half an hour earlier in one of the rooms of the State residence put at their disposal, but Gottwald was late.
In the summer of 1945, Allied victory over Nazi Germany had been secured, but the conflict had left the British people exhausted and the nation financially crippled. To keep going, between 1939 and 1941 Britain had liquidated most of its overseas holdings, sacrificed most of its export trade, and borrowed to excess. The national feeling was that Britain had stood up for what was right in order to protect and safeguard the future of all humanity, while all around sat still.
The Lidice Shall Live Committee organised for children from Lidice to visit Britain on a number of occasions. One such cultural encounter took place in the summer of 1962 when 15 children and 5 women arrived on Tuesday, the 19th of June to be the honoured guests of communities such as Coventry, Stoke-on-Trent, London, and Deal in Kent.
On the 24th of April 1947, Mr Josef David, President of the Czechoslovak National Assembly, began a fortnight’s tour of Great Britain. He dropped in at Shelley Potteries in Fenton before moving on to other venues, including a special reception at the civic chambers in Stoke.
Nosek, the prime mover behind the construction of a new Lidice, was also a principal agitator at a community level and within industry, ruthless in the pursuit of the Communists’ manifesto and willing to implement totalitarian methods.