Grenfell Tower fire: Lily Allen pulled from Newsnight after controversial remarks

The singer accused the government of withholding the real number of fatalities

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The Independent Culture

UPDATE: The BBC has since denied that Lily Allen's Newsnight appearance was cancelled due to her Grenfell Tower remarks. Read the full statement here.

Lily Allen had an appearance on Newsnight cancelled following comments she made about the Grenfell Tower fire on Channel 4 News.

The singer was scheduled to appear on the political BBC series last night (15 June) but later announced she had been cancelled and replaced by “someone from the council” instead.

Allen had appeared on Channel 4 News earlier in the evening where she refused to hold back on her views regarding the catastrophic London fire which destroyed a tower block in Kensington and ended the lives of 30.

In an interview with newsreader Jon Snow, the singer accused the government of withholding the real number of fatalities which, at the time of reporting was 17.


“I have never in my entire life seen an event like this where the death count has been downplayed by the mainstream media,” she said.

Allen continued “Seventeen? I'm sorry but I'm hearing from people that the figure is much closer to 150, and that many of those people are children.

“Those are off the record numbers I've been given from policemen and from firemen.”

Snow played devil's advocate. While acknowledging that the fatalities will likely increase “very considerably,” the broadcaster suggested that the death toll reports may be clouded due to the difficulty in identifying victims.

Allen continued expressing her views on Twitter throughout the evening, taking into account Snow's comments.

“I appreciate the difficulties with identifying bodies, but there are people out here clinging to hope when I don't think there is any,” she wrote before posting a note detailing why she's linking the tragedy to politics.


Allen isn't the only figure from the world being vocal about politics following the incident: Mobo award-winning artist Akala expressed his belief that the victims died “because they were poor.”

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