Nantes residents were shocked after a fire at Saint-Pierre-et-Saint-Paul cathedral in Nantes destroyed the stained glass and the organ of the Gothic cathedral on Saturday.
Mayor of Nantes Johanna Rolland spoke to the press outside the cathedral saying, «The first ones to be alerted were the neighbors and I can tell you they were, stupefied, emotional.»
«All the people of Nantes are sad because the cathedral, our cathedral is of course a major monument for the Nantes Catholic community but also a place for all Nantes people,» she added.
The cathedral roof had suffered damage following a large fire in 1972. It underwent renovations whereby concrete beams were installed which were finished in 2013. According to reports, the roof has not been affected.
Rector of the Cathedral Father Hubert Champenois said, «I was already here on May 30th 1972 and we only had our eyes to cry. And we were already really traumatised as the cathedral is a symbol of life and spirituality in the heart of the city.»
More than 100 firefighters were there to extinguish the fire which is now believed to have been an act of arson.