Fire ravages Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

Smoke billows as fire engulfs the spire of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris France

"Prince Philip and I have been deeply saddened to see the images of the fire which has engulfed Notre-Dame Cathedral", a statement issued from the palace on behalf of the queen reads.

Meanwhile Mr. Pinault, who, with his son, is estimated to represent France's sixth fortune, is following hot on Mr. Arnault's heels and is set to open his multimillion-dollar contemporary art museum, the Collection Pinault-Paris, next spring. Evacuated artwork that survived the blaze will be transferred to the Louvre Museum, a French culture ministry representative said.

French President Emmanuel Macron noted that despite the roof and the iconic spire being lost to the fire, much of the face of the building has been saved by the firefighting efforts which were undoubtedly hampered by the wooden construction of the building from the era.

Macron has already pledged to fully rebuild the damaged cathedral. Prosecutors have opened an investigation, the Associated Press explained, and will consider "involuntary destruction caused by fire".

"We will rebuild it together".

"Let's be proud, because we built this cathedral more than 800 years ago, we've built it and, throughout the centuries, let it grow and improved it".

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip extended their condolences to French President Emmanuel Macron following the tragic fire that ripped through the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.

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"In the wake of this national tragedy, the Arnault family and the LVMH Group pledge their support for Notre Dame", said a statement by Arnault's LVMH Group.

"That becomes part of the history as well".

Billionaire Bernard Arnault on September 19, 2017. Hundreds of people gathered for a vigil prayer across the Seine from the cathedral, singing and listening to music by a string quartet.

"Notre Dame is burning, and I know the sadness, and this tremor felt by so many fellow French people".

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo also said today that the city would unlock €50 million, and would propose holding an worldwide donors' conference in the coming weeks to coordinate the pledges to restore the gothic architectural masterpiece.

The fire quickly drew the attention of world leaders.

Prince Charles and Camilla also shared a message to the French President, with the future King writing: "My wife and I were utterly heartbroken to learn of the awful fire at Notre-Dame Cathedral this evening and wanted to let you know immediately how much we are thinking of yourself and the French people at this most agonizing of times, and of the emergency services who are so bravely tackling the blaze".

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