Queen Elizabeth led the royal family in expressing sympathy to those who lost their lives in the tragic fire that engulfed the Grenfell Tower high-rise apartment building on Wednesday, while praising the bravery of firefighters who tackled the deadly inferno.
She and husband Prince Philip said their “thoughts and prayers” were with the families, as Princes William, Harry and Princess Kate made a donation to a fund to help the families who were made homeless by the tragedy.
In a statement signed “Elizabeth R” and released early on Thursday, the Queen, 91, said, “My thoughts and prayers are with those families who have lost loved ones in the Grenfell Tower fire and the many people who are still critically ill in hospital. Prince Philip and I would like to pay tribute to the bravery of firefighters and other emergency services officers who put their own lives at risk to save others.
“It is also heartening to see the incredible generosity of community volunteers rallying to help those affected by this terrible event.”
Police have announced that the number of people who are known to have died in the tragedy has risen to 17, and is likely to go up further, authorities said. There are 37 people receiving treatment with 17 critically-ill.
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The news came as William, Harry and Kate made an undisclosed donation to a fund to help those made homeless by the inferno that destroyed a residential apartment building in west London on Wednesday.
They made the contribution to the London Evening Standard’s Dispossessed Fund after to help those affected by the Grenfell Tower fire tragedy.
A spokesman for the three royals at Kensington Palace said, “The tragedy at Grenfell Tower has left a number of local people in need of urgent assistance. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry are pleased the Evening Standard’s Dispossessed Fund has immediately swung into action. As residents of the local area they are keen to offer their immediate support.”