The Queen has expressed her deep sadness and sent a message of support to the people of France in the wake of the Notre Dame Cathedral fire.
The monarch, whose own beloved Windsor Castle was ravaged by a devastating blaze in 1992, said her thoughts and prayers were were with those who worship at the landmark and “all of France at this difficult time”.
The Queen, in her message to the French President Emmanuel Macron, said: “Prince Philip and I have been deeply saddened to see the images of the fire which has engulfed Notre Dame Cathedral.
“I extend my sincere admiration to the emergency services who have risked their lives to try to save this important national monument.
“My thoughts and prayers are with those who worship at the Cathedral and all of France at this difficult time.”
The message was signed: “Elizabeth R.”
The huge blaze that hit Windsor Castle 27 years ago damaged more than 100 rooms including the vast medieval St George’s Hall, and the catastrophic events in Paris will no doubt have brought back memories of this traumatic event for the Queen.
Mr Macron has vowed to rebuild the historic landmark – and fundraising has already begun.
Windsor Castle was restored to its former glory over five years in what was described as the greatest historic building project undertaken in the UK in the 20th century.
The Queen would have seen the Notre Dame Cathedral on her state visit to Paris in 2014, when she toured the flower market Marche aux Fleurs, just a few steps away from the medieval monument.