Notre-Dame fire: Investigation begins

An investigation is underway in Île de la Cité in Paris after a devastating fire engulfed one of the capital’s most historical and beloved buildings, the Cathédrale Notre-Dame.

According to local media, the police are working on the assumption that the fire was accidental and possibly related to ongoing renovation works at the site.

The fire began at 1900 local time, collapsing both the 800-year old spire and the roof before it was brought under control by firefighters who managed to save its famous bell towers along with the outer walls. One firefighter suffered only minor injuries while tackling the blaze.

National monuments such as this are self insured by the French state, and it is understood that AXA is the liability insurer for two of the restoration contractors.

Experts from Historic England are coordinating with colleagues across the UK heritage sector to make an offer of support to their French counterparts once the damage has been assessed. And in a further show of solidarity with France, Prime Minister Theresa May said that bells will be rung at churches and cathedrals across England today and on Maundy Thursday.

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