THE names of the 72 victims of the Grenfell Tower disaster were read aloud at a memorial service today on the fifth anniversary of the blaze.

Silence fell as crowds gathered at Westminster Abbey to remember those who died in the horror on June 14 2017.

After each group of names was read out, the congregation said in unison "Forever in our hearts" – the phrase emblazoned across the top of the tower in north Kensington.

Former prime minister Theresa May, London Mayor Sadiq Khan, Housing Secretary Michael Gove and journalist Jon Snow were among those to attend.

Opening the service, the very Reverend Dr David Hoyle, Dean of Westminster, said the loss and anguish "are still vivid and sharp" as the congregation gathered "in sorrow and in pain".

He said: "Here we renew our commitment to remember those we have lost.

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"We gather as those who look for justice and a renewed commitment to securing safety in our homes, safety in times of fire.

"Grateful for the support of the communities and individuals that have sustained the bereaved and the survivors over the last five years, we meet in faith and hope looking to a better, safer, surer future."

It is one of several events at which Grenfell survivors and those who lost loved ones will gather today.

At 2pm, a 72-second silence was observed at Westfield shopping centre, after which the names of the victims were read out over the public address system.

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Later in the afternoon, cording around the tower will be removed so survivors and the bereaved can lay flowers.

And in the evening, firefighters from across the country will form a guard of honour as members of the community take part in a silent walk starting from the base of the tower.

Natasha Elcock, chairwoman of campaign group Grenfell United, said: "This week will be a difficult week for everyone affected by the Grenfell Tower fire.

"For many of us the events five years ago are still so raw in our minds and our losses remain heavy in our hearts."

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Pete Wolfenden, a firefighter who responded to the blaze, said: "It's been five years since the Grenfell Tower fire and the thoughts and wishes go out from all London firefighters and fire control staff personnel to the survivors and friends and family of those who lost their lives in this appalling incident, the worst domestic blaze in living memory.

"We also remember the brave and courageous members of all the emergency services who attended on the night and subsequent days, some of whom still suffer ill-health and bear the mental scars of attending that traumatic incident."

The victims of Grenfell

Logan Gomes (floor 21), died stillborn after the fire

Denis Murphy (floor 14), 56

Mohamed Amied Neda (floor 23), 57

Joseph Daniels (floor 16), 69

Mary Mendy (floor 20), 54

Khadija Saye (floor 20), 24

Debbie Lamprell (floor 19), 45

Maria del Pilar Burton (floor 19), 74

Rania Ibrahim, 31, and her two children Fethia Hassan, four, and three-year-old Hania Hassan (floor 23)

Choucair family (floor 22) – Nadia, 33, her husband Bassem Choukair, 40, their three children Mierna, 13, Fatima, 11, and Zainab, three, died along with their grandmother Sirria, 60

Hesham Rahman (floor 23)

Anthony Disson (floor 22), 65

Zainab Deen and Jeremiah Deen (floor 14), 32 and two

Ali Yawar Jafari (floor 11), 82

Gary Maunders (floor 19), 57

Majorie Vital and Ernie Vital (floor 19), 68 and 50

Victoria King and Alexandra Atala (floor 20), 71 and 40

Tuccu-Ahmedin family (floor 19) – Mohamednur Tuccu, 44, his wife Amal Ahmedin, 35, and their three-year-old daughter Amaya Tuccu-Ahmedin, all died. Amna Mahmud Idris, 27, was visiting her cousin Ms Ahmedin at the time of the fire and also died.

Miah-Begum family (floor 17) – Kamru Miah, 79, Rabeya Begum, 64, Mohammed Hamid, 28, Mohammed Hanif, 26 and Husna Begum, 22.

Fathia Ali Ahmed Elsanosi, 73, Abufars Ibrahim and Isra Ibrahim, 33 (floor 23)

Ligaya Moore (floor 21), 78

Vincent Chiejina (floor 17), 60

The El-Wahabi family (floor 21) – Father Abdulaziz, 52, wife Faouzia, 41, and children Yasin, 20, Nur Huda, 16, and Mehdi, eight, all died.

Khadija Khaloufi (floor 17), 52

Jessica Urbano Ramirez (floor 20), 12

The Kedir family (floor 22) – Hashim Kedir, 44, died with his wife Nura Jemal, 35, daughter Firdaws Hashim, 12, and sons Yahya Hashim, 13, and Yaqub Hashim, six.

Steve Power (floor 15), 63

Eslah and Mariem Elgwahry (floor 22)

Berkti Haftom, 29, and Biruk Haftom, 12 (floor 18)

Gloria Trevisan (floor 23), 26

Sakineh Afrasiabi (floor 18), 65

Hamid Kani (floor 18), 61

Isaac Paulos (floor 18), five

Mohammad al-Haj Ali (floor 14), 23

Raymond "Moses" Bernard (floor 23), 63

Fatemeh Afrasiabi (visiting her sister on 18th floor), 59

The Belkadi family (floor 20) – Farah Hamdan, 31, her husband Omar Belkadi, 32, and children Malak Belkadi, eight, and six-month-old Leena Belkadi, all died.

Marco Gottardi (floor 23), 27

Abdeslam Sebbar (floor 11), 77

Sheila Smith (floor 16), 84

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