A house fire which has left six people in hospital is believed to have started under the stairs.

Fire crews from Hainault, Ilford, Woodford and Walthamstow rescued an elderly woman believed to be aged 77 from the first floor bedroom of the house in Forest Road, Barkingside.

Using nine metre ladders they rescued another woman, four men and two children aged three and one from the first floor.

Another woman jumped from the first floor to escape the blaze.

Six of the nine people from the house were taken to Whipps Cross Hospital in Leytonstone suffering with smoke inhalation.

The fire which started at around 9.30am this morning was extinguished and contained within half an hour.

Press Liason Officer Tej Ajimal said: "We believe the fire started under the stairs, but we don't know the cause of it yet.

"The crews worked hard to rescue everyone.

"The family had a smoke alarm which alerted them to the fire. It could have been a lot worse if they didn't have one."

The Fire Investigation Crew remain at the house to establish how the fire started.

  • Watch a video of firefighters at the blaze by clicking through to our YouTube channel here