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'Remembrance, community and hope' - Grenfell Tower disaster remembered six months on

More than 1,500 people affected in various ways by the Grenfell Fire have come together exactly six months on, to remember the tragic events of that day and the 71 lives lost.

The Grenfell Tower National Memorial Service took place at St Paul's on 14 December 2017.


Opening the service, which was attended by survivors, the bereaved, emergency services and people from scores of organisations which assisted in the aftermath of the fire, the Dean of St Paul's, The Very Reverend David Ison, said: "In this service we bring together people of different faiths and none, as we remember with love before God those whose lives were lost, and pray for them to be at peace."

Also at the service were The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall, Duke and duchess of Cambridge, Prince Harry, Teresa May and Jeremy Corbyn.

Designed with input from the Grenfell community, the service was a mix of sights and sounds, with the Al-Sadiq and Al-Zahra Schools Girls Choir, oud player Rihab Azar and the Ebony Steel Band, joining the Cathedral Choir and Organ.

A particularly moving moment saw Maria Jafari, the daugther of one of the fire's victims, read a poem by 13th century Persian poet Jalal ad-Din Muhamma Rumi.

In his address, the Bishop of Kensington, the Right Reverend Graham Tomlin spoke of the horror of the fateful day in June and also of the great strength of community that was born from it and what the future can hold. He said: "Our hope is the name of Grenfell will not just be known as a symbol of sorrow, grief and injustice but a symbol of the time we learnt a new and better way to listen and to love".