NOTRE Dame cathedral was hit by a devastating fire on Monday 15th April.
The inferno laid waste to the historic building’s old church spire and one of its turrets.
What started the Notre Dame fire?
French officials have reported that the cause of the fire may be linked to £5 million renovation work that was taking place on the cathedral. Many parts of the building have been covered in scaffolding.
A “stray flame” is thought to have sparked the fire in the loft at 5.30pm local time.
“It appears that it all began as a relatively small fire linked to a stray flame in the roof,” said an emergency services source.
“The fire was so high up that it was difficult to get to, meaning it soon spread across the roof, causing a terrible blaze.”
However, a full investigation has been opened to determine the cause.
Will the cathedral survive?
French authorities were working to control the flames but the getting firefighters to the top of the landmark “was almost impossible.”
The United Nations cultural agency said on Monday, they will help France “save and restore” the “priceless heritage”.
Although the building has suffered extreme damage, the main structure has been saved.
What has Emmanuel Macron said?
The president of France postphoned his televised speech to the nation to attend the scene.
On Twitter he joined Parisians in mourning the loss of the landmark: “Notre Dame of Paris in flames. Emotion of a whole nation. Thoughts go out to all Catholics and all of France. Like all our countrymen, I’m sad tonight to see this part of us burn.”
Were there any casualties?
Firefighters evacuated the area around the cathedral in the centre of Paris, as well as nearby buildings.
A fire department spokesman said: “We are not aware of any casualties, or of anyone being trapped, so there will be no emergency rescue plans being put into action.”
What is the history of Notre Dame Cathedral?
Notre Dame Cathedral was built in 1160 and completed in 1260 and is said to be one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture in Europe. It has been modified many times since.
The name of the building means “Our Lady” and it is the cathedral of the Archdiocese of Paris. The heritage sight was the main setting for Victor Hugo’s novel The Hunchback of Notre Dame in 1831, which lead to a renewed interest in the building. The cathedral is now visited by around 12 million people every year.