The roof of a shop with flats has collapsed following a fire this morning.

Firefighters rushed to George Lane in South Woodford at 9.25am, as the roof of the building collapsed into the first floor.

Two people had left the building before the fire brigade arrived, and firefighters then evacuated 11 people from neighbouring properties as a precaution.

Crews remain at the scene and a search of the building was carried out to ensure that there are no people inside.

There are no reports of any injuries.

Station Commander Shaun Fox, who is at the scene, said: “The roof of the building has collapsed into the first floor.

“Our Urban Search and Rescue crews are on scene and a 25m cordon has been put in place as a precaution.

“A police search dog has carried out an external search of the building and we are satisfied that there are no people in the building.”

Road closures are now in place between Chigwell Road and Viaduct whilst crews work to make the scene safe.