79 people feared dead in London high-rise fire

Ross Houston
June 20, 2017

Residents affected by the London tower block inferno were passionate and angry during a lengthy exchange with Prime Minister Theresa May, a bishop who sat with them has revealed.

The queen's official birthday is marked in June when the weather is often nicer than in April, the actual month of her birth.

This year, however, it is very hard to escape a very sombre national mood.

"This was a awful tragedy that took place.

We have endeavoured to keep accommodation as local as possible, and we completely accept residents' wishes to remain close to the community", the new official coordinating body, the Grenfell Response Team (which has representatives from London-wide local government, central government, British Red Cross, the Metropolitan police and London fire brigade) said in a statement.


Queen Elizabeth II said the disaster had cast a sombre pall over Britain, but insisted the country was showing resolve in the face of adversity.

Some wore T-shirts with images of missing loved ones as they climbed the front steps and pushed their way into the building. The fire has led to national soul-searching about inequalities and neglect of the poor. Organizers handed out fliers that read, "Your anger must be heard".

Theresa May, Britain's embattled Prime Minister, is facing criticism for failing to meet residents when she visited the scene Thursday.

Mrs May has pledged a £5 million support package for the victims, which included a promise to rehouse them within three weeks.

Grief has since given way to anger as protests were held in London yesterday by residents demanding more support for those affected by the fire.


David Lammy said Sunday he is anxious that documents will be quietly deleted and disposed of as police begin a search for evidence. The second question is were they correctly complied with?

Police have opened a criminal investigation into the circumstances of the blaze. Attention has focused on materials used during the renovation process completed previous year. No sprinkler system was installed. In 2014, a man who fled his apartment on the 38th floor of a New York City apartment building died when he encountered a plume of suffocating smoke in a stairwell as he tried to descend to the street. Sadly for many families who have lost more than one family member in this incident.

Survivors have not been told how long they will stay in hotel accommodation, and have to make a telephone call every day to see if they are staying another night, adding to a sense of insecurity, she said. "I will help you from up there". Authorities may never be able to identify some of the victims, he said.

West London film producer Nisha Parti, who has been helping victims in Kensington, said the cash is being given to those checking into hotels in the wake of Wednesday's blaze.

Omar, 25, survived, but the brothers were separated as firefighters tried to rescue them from the burning building early Wednesday. Hundreds of others have been left homeless and dozens are missing.


The fire triggered both sorrow and outrage, as residents described the futility of their earlier attempts to have the building's safety issues addressed, particularly its fire escape plan.

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