Local Synagogue Offers Aid Following Deadly London Apartment Building Fire
A synagogue in London located mere blocks away from the residential building that caught fire early Wednesday morning has offered to aid rescuers dealing with the deadly blaze, the UK’s Jewish Chronicle reported.
The staff at Holland Park Synagogue contacted local officials to see how they could be of assistance after hearing about the massive fire at Grenfell Towers in North Kensington, where at least six people died. Laurence Julius, honorary treasurer of the synagogue, wrote to the Kensington and Chelsea Council, “We have just heard of the news and as part of the local community we would like to offer to help. Please let us know what we can do.” The synagogue has not been called upon yet to act.
In a separate email to members of the synagogue, Julius wrote: “We express our horror at the tragic event. The people who lived in the tower have lost everything. Anything you can do to help will be much appreciated.” He added that a collection will take place on Sunday for those who want to donate clothes and toiletries, and members were also asked to donate via an online fundraising page.
Forty fire engines and around 200 firefighters were called to the scene a little before 1 a.m. on Wednesday morning and 50 people are currently being treated in hospitals, the Jewish Chronicle reported. Scotland Yard said the death toll was expected to rise exponentially and reports suggested the fire at the 27-story structure may have been caused by a faulty refrigerator, according to the Daily Mail.
The New West End Synagogue, which is also located near the site of the fire, forwarded Holland Park’s email to its members, and Notting Hill Chabad said it was distributing necessary items and providing support to those affected by the disaster, the Jewish Chronicle noted. Borehamwood Synagogue will also be collecting clothing, toiletries, bedding and other items to distribute to victims of the fire and their families.