International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt said the fire was “heartbreaking”. She said: “Heartbreaking to see Notre Dame ablaze. Praying no one hurt.
Historian Tom Holland said: “History is indeed being made in the most terrible, heart-rending way.
He later added: “An irony: Christians can watch the destruction of Notre Dame, and be confident, amidst all their sorrow, that only the City of God is truly eternal – that every work of humans will ultimately turn to dust. Those without religious faith lack that consolation.”
A spokesperson from Westminster Abbey said they were “devastated” for their friends at Notre Dame and for the people of France.
“You are in our thoughts and prayers tonight,” they added.
Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the most senior Catholic in England and Wales said: “The shock at the outbreak of this fire is spreading round the world.
“It is an iconic building visited by millions but more importantly is a symbol of faith which is at the heart of Europe.
“We therefore all pray that the fire is extinguished quickly and with a shared effort the building made good.”
Art dealer Philip Mould picked out one gothic statue he hopes is spared from the flames.