FIRE crews rescued more than 40 animals after a blaze erupted in a property in Colchester.

Firefighters from Colchester and Wivenhoe were called to Cavendish Avenue, Colchester, on Wednesday afternoon at around 12.30pm after a fire started in a garage and spread to a bungalow next door.

Dogs, cats, birds, pigs, guinea pigs and a rabbit were in the property which caught fire, and were saved by firefighters.

One marmoset is reported to have died.

Gazette: The fire started in a garage before spreading to an adjoining bungalowThe fire started in a garage before spreading to an adjoining bungalow

Station Manager, Syd Barrett, praised the work of the crews, who put out the fire by 1.23pm.

He said: “No-one was in the property when the fire started, but thankfully neighbours heard the smoke alarms and noticed the smoke.

“The fire was well-developed when crews arrived.

“Crew Manager Jeremy Castle and his teams did a fantastic job, working extremely hard to get it under control so quickly and stop it from spreading.”

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The occupants of the property returned home as firefighters arrived at the scene during the afternoon.

A woman was left in the care of the ambulance service after breathing in smoke.

An investigation will be carried out to determine the cause.