ITV has commissioned a new documentary on the horrors of Nazi concentration camp Belsen, marking 75 years since it was liberated by Allied troops.
In Return To Belsen, journalist and author Jonathan Dimbleby will retrace his father’s footsteps.
“This landmark documentary is a timely reflection on the horrors of Belsen, which still resonate with the British public today. While the subject matter is clearly challenging, anniversaries like this give us the chance to engage viewers, to give them the inside track on issues which inform current events and which have changed the course of history and of popular culture.” – Tom Giles, Controller of Current Affairs, ITV
Jonathan visits the site in Germany where a reported 70,000 Jews, gay men, gypsies and foreign prisoners died. It was eventually burned down by British troops to avoid disease spreading – and now principally consists of memorials, mass graves, along with a remembrance museum.
Joined by a survivor and the daughter of a survivor, Jonathan will explore the grim history of what became one of the last concentration camps to be liberated in 1945. His father Richard was the first journalist allowed into the camp, and the radio reports he sent back are now ingrained into the British consciousness as a document of the systematic mass murder undertaken by the Nazi regime.
Alongside powerful archive and Jonathan’s thoughts and recollections, the film which airs in April will include testimony from survivors and family members about their emotional reactions to what has happened in the 75 years since it was liberated, and reflections on the recent rise of antisemitism as a prominent issue.
“This documentary has been fascinating to watch come together given the skill and sensitivity it has required from the production team.” – Mike Blair, Executive Producer, MultiStory Media
Return To Belsen will be produced by MultiStory Media, who are also making a documentary about the Raoul Moat Manhunt for ITV.