A 94-year-old disabled woman was dramatically rescued by a next-door neighbour as fire tore through the roof of her home in Trowbridge this evening.

The pensioner was led to safety after the neighbour's husband Lec Kola spotted the blaze in Newtown after he returned home from work.

While he dialled 999 for the emergency services, his wife Bardha dashed into the home of the elderly woman to lead her to safety.

Tonight, more than 25 firefighters from three counties are tackling the fire, which was spotted earlier this evening.

Mr Kola, 40 who has lived with his wife and four children in Newtown for more than ten years, said: "I had just come home from work when I saw a plume of white smoke coming from the roof.

"My wife Bardha went into the house to get the lady out while I dialled 999 for the fire service."

Another close neighbour, Mark Hartley, 54, said: "I heard the fire engines turn up and went outside to see what was happening.

"At first I thought it was Lec's house and then I saw that it was the old lady's. By that time, Lec had called the emergency services and Bardha had got the old lady out."

Mr Hartley's wife, Lisa, 44, opened up their home to neighbours whose homes were next to the house affected by the fire.

"My wife is making them cups of tea and coffee and has put some films on for the children," said Mr Hartley, who was stood outside watching the fire crews.

It is understood the elderly woman, named as Cynthia 'Pat' Shanks, was being cared for by neighbours across the road.

Bardha, 40, said: "We has just come home from Bath when we saw the fire. I knew that Pat would be in bed so I got the key to her door and went upstairs to wake her up.

"She was fast asleep in bed and I woke her up and said "Pat, we have got to get out, there's a fire'.

"I was not too bad. I got her zimmer frame and managed to get her to her stairlift and downstairs.

"Another lady came to help, and we managed to find her wheelchair and get her out.

"We took her over the road where a young woman with a baby came out and took her inside to get warm.

"She's very shaken but all right. She keeps saying she wants to go back home."

Mrs Shanks' daughter, Susanne Matthews, 62, from Frome, said: "My mother is very shaken and upset but she will be allright.

"Bardha is my heroine. She saved my mother's life. Mum is deaf and would not have heard a smoke alarm.

"She managed to get her downstairs with the stairlift and into a wheelchair and brought her out of the house."

Mrs Matthews' husband Ian and Pat's two great-granddaughters Lily, 11, and Freya, 10, had visited her earlier in the evening before her carer came to put her to bed at 7pm.

The nearby Methodist Church also stayed open following a children's club that ended at 8pm to make cups of tea and coffee for local residents.

Church member Kate Rainbow, 43, said: "The club had just ended and one parent came in and said there was a fire in the street.

"There were lots of people standing around so we thought we would provide them with some warmth and some cups of tea.

"We will stay here for as long as we are needed."

Neighbours congregated outside in the street, as crews from Trowbridge, Warminster, Frome and Bath tackled the blaze with six breathing apparatus, three hose reels and two main jets.

Police closed the road in both directions between Stallard Street and Frome Road while firefighters dealt with the incident.

Station manager Richard Humphrey, from Trowbridge fire station, said they had received a call just before 8pm.

"We sent out one crew from Trowbridge and the roof of the house was well alight when we arrived.

"One casualty had been rescued by a member of the public and we increased our attendance.

"We had crews from Warminster and Frome, and a pump and an aerial platform from Bath."

More than 25 firefighters are trying to bring the fire under control. It has partially destroyed the roof of the three-bedroomed property.

Mr Humphrey added: "It has gone through the roof and we are checking the houses on either side to make sure the fire has not spread."

The cause of the fire is still unknown and fire investigation officers will attempt to determine how it started once the blaze has been brought under control.