Grenfell Tower bonfire effigy burning leads to five arrests

Prime minister Theresa May had called video of the incident 'utterly unnacceptable'

Adam Withnall
Tuesday 06 November 2018 05:10
Video emerges of Grenfell Tower model being burned on bonfire

Five men have been arrested after a video was posted online showing the burning of an effigy of Grenfell Tower.

The men handed themselves in to a South London police station on Monday night, after the Metropolitan Police said it was launching an investigation into the "vile" video.

A total of 72 people died in the Grenfell Tower disaster in June 2017, when the West London residential block was rapidly engulfed in flames.

Two of the men who handed themselves in were aged 49 and the rest aged 19, 46 and 55, police said. They were arrested on suspicion of a public order offence and taken into custody.

The video which emerged on Monday showed a paper effigy clearly marked "Grenfell Tower", and with figures of people at the windows, being burned to mark Bonfire Night.

Theresa May, the prime minister, said that "to disrespect those who lost their lives at Grenfell Tower, as well as their families and loved ones, is utterly unacceptable".

In the video, people watching the burning can be heard mockingly shouting "stay in your flats" - a reference to the advice given to families for action in the event of a fire.

One person can be heard saying it is "really bad taste", but the burning is generally accompanied by laughter.

Campaign group Grenfell United condemned the video as “disgusting”.

“Not only is it extremely upsetting to survivors and people who lost family, it’s hateful and offensive to everyone that has been affected by the tragic events of that night.”

The inquest into the Grenfell Tower disaster is ongoing.