Croydon fires: Dozens of firefighters tackle two wildfires in Shirley Hills woodland and Chapel View

It comes as the fire service has declared a major incident, with other serious fires in Upminster, Southgate, Wennington, Wembley and Dartford near the M25.

Dozens of firefighters are battling two blazes in the Shirley Hills woodland in Croydon, south London.

Two grass fires have broken out in the forested area as the heatwave continues to scorch the city, with temperatures reaching record highs of 40.2C in the capital.

Dozens of firefighters are battling two blazes in the Shirley Hills woodland in Croydon. Photo: Peter Trimming

It comes as the fire service has declared a major incident, with other serious fires in Upminster, Southgate, Wennington, Wembley and Dartford near the M25.

Eight fire engines and around 60 firefighters are currently dealing with a fire in the woodlands on Oaks Road in Croydon, after the brigade was called at 12.07pm.

Two grass fires have broken out in the forested area. Photo: Peter Trimming

While another four fire engines are also dealing with a grass fire on Chapel View in South Croydon, where around one hectare of woodland and undergrowth is currently alight.

Firefighters were called to the scene just 13 minutes later at 12.20pm.

It comes as the fire service has declared a major incident. Photo: Peter Trimming

A London Fire Brigade (LFB) spokesperson said: "The recent hot, dry weather has made the ground extremely dry, which unfortunately means grassland and parks will burn quickly when exposed to even the smallest of sparks.

“Common causes of grass fires include carelessly discarded cigarettes or matches as well as rubbish left lying around such as glass bottles, which can start flames by magnifying the sun’s rays.

“Every one of us can help reduce the risk of fire and keep our communities clean, make sure rubbish is safely thrown away and cigarettes are always properly disposed of.

“If you see a grass fire, don’t attempt to put it out yourself as grass fires can travel very quickly and change direction without warning.

“If you see signs of smouldering grass then call the brigade and let us know where the fire is.”

Sarah Jones, MP for Croydon Central, tweeted: “I’m very grateful to the firefighters working hard on the ground in Croydon, for updates on the Croydon grass fires, please check this link.

“Keep safe and remain vigilant!”

More to follow.