The Great British Bake Off host, 48, traveled to Amsterdam – where Anne and her family hid from the Nazis – while filming an episode of BBC One Who do you think you are?
Matt’s ancestor is Werner Goldschmidt, who is his grandmother’s cousin.
Werner’s mother is also Matt’s great-great-aunt, Herta. Werner lived in the Anne Frank family home before the family tragically went into hiding from the Nazis.
Werner had the Frank family’s trust as they left a note with instructions to give their cat to a neighbor as mentioned in Anne’s diary.
Matt said: “My ancestor would have known Anne Frank, and Werner is actually mentioned in the diary. That’s the only story anybody knows if you don’t know another story, that story about what happened to Jews in World War II, you know the Frank family story I read it when I was younger and never realized it was about a relative of mine.
Anne’s diary was written while she was in hiding from the Germans and became one of the most famous books in the world.
Matt said: “He didn’t necessarily know they were about to hide, so he was hiding a bit unwelcome the day before they left.”
“He must not have known that this momentous event was taking place.”
During the Nazi occupation of Holland, the Frank family moved into a secret annex for two years before being captured and sent to concentration camps.
Anne fell ill with typhus and died aged 15 in Bergen-Belsen, Germany in 1945.
During the recording of Who Do You Think You Are? Matt travels from Amsterdam to Berlin to learn more about his beloved grandmother Margot, who arrived in the UK in 1939 as a Jewish refugee.
The little britain The star was “really close” to his grandmother until her death in 1999 and says he was told vaguely about the death of some of his family members in concentration camps, but he didn’t no details.
Matt further explains how upsetting it is to find out that Werner and other relatives perished in the camps.
He goes on to say, “It’s terrible.”
“Where you were born and what your religion is, this lottery determines your fate, and it’s not even a lottery you choose to play.”
“As a Jew there is always a risk that because it is recent history it will happen again. It is so important to tell these stories. I feel very lucky to have had this opportunity .”
by Matt Lucas Who do you think you are? is June 16, 9 p.m., BBC One.