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West London churches respond to tragic fire

Following the tragic fire in West London, a community response and evacuation centre has been set up in nearby St Clement’s Church in Treadgold Street. The church opened its doors at 3am on Wednesday morning to take in those who were evacuated from Grenfell Tower when the fire started, it will stay open all day for those affected by the fire.

A social media campaign was initiated early in the morning to urge Londoners with spare clothes, toiletries, toys, nappies and food to donate them to St Clement’s Church for those who have lost their homes in the fire. Due to the volume of donations received St Clement’s are now at capacity and are not able to accept anything further.

Other local churches such as St Peter’s, Notting Hill, are still accepting donations and a number of online appeals have also been set up.

The Bishop of Kensington, Graham Tomlin, will spend the day at St Clement’s to provide support to those affected. He said:

I have been here since early in the morning talking with firefighters and ambulance staff who have been doing a heroic job through the night. It has obviously been very distressing for them. Clergy are here offering support where they can. Several churches have been open from early this morning, offering food and clothing. The whole community has been busy offering what help they can. Our hearts go out to those who are worried about loved ones and we continue to pray for those who are waiting for news and for courage for the emergency services.”

Other churches in the wider deanery are drawing together volunteer teams who are able to serve tea, coffee and food, listen to people, pray with people and in general to show compassion to those impacted by the fire.

The Met Police has set up an emergency number on 0800 0961 233 for anyone concerned about friends or family.

PHOTO: Bishop of Kensington Graham Tomlin with Mayor of London Sadiq Khan at the scene

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