Hamilton will be chasing a fifth straight victory and a record sixth overall in his home race on Sunday.
Hamilton said the way Mercedes has responded to problems this season has "really united us more than any other year". "It's a real privilege for me and I was just watching some of the replays of past year and if you look at the end when it shows you all of the positions and obviously to see the Union Jack up there is always a great feeling. So, yeah, I can't tell you how happy I am, happy for the fans, and I hope that I can deliver for them tomorrow". "It felt like the most pressurised lap I have ever had. I was shaking through the emotion, the adrenaline rush was way above the limit that I had experienced before".
'It is my 76th pole, but is so special and I am so happy.
Vettel, who revealed he nearly pulled out of the running with a neck injury, added: "To be honest this morning I was not sure I could do qualifying".
Hamilton, a point behind fellow-four times champion Vettel after nine races, has now had six poles at Silverstone and Saturday was his fourth in a row at the circuit he has come to dominate since his debut in 2007.
Australian Daniel Ricciardo and Kimi Raikkonen traded fourth and fifth places while Max Verstappen, victor in Austria for Red Bull, was sixth in the morning but crashed after lunch without setting a time.
"But the auto is strong...it's going to be a struggle with the guys ahead".
The rest of the top 10 was completed by Daniel Ricciardo, Kevin Magnussen, Romain Grosjean, Charles Leclerc and Esteban Ocon.
The French driver did not take part in second practice as his chassis was being replaced.
He will start from the back of the grid.
Williams' woes continued in qualifying when Lance Stroll lost control and crashed out early in the session, with teammate Sergey Sirotkin following suit shortly afterward. "To push over the limit just a little bit more, without losing it, is one of the toughest positions to put the auto".
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