RESIDENTS living in Compton Bassett and the Calne area were advised to keep their doors and windows closed this morning as up to 40 firefighters battled a large fire at a Hills Waste Solutions landfill site in Wiltshire.

Towering plumes of dense black smoke which can be seen for miles around are coming from the blaze at the Hills facility in Compton Bassett and are drifting south towards Calne.

A spokeswoman for Hills Waste said a member of staff had raised the alarm at 5am this morning, and the fire services were called, with the site emergency plan initiated. No-one has been injured.

"The incident is ongoing and emergency services remain in attendance. The landfill site has been temporarily closed, but all other operations on site are open," she said.

"We are working with the fire and rescue service, and other agencies, to help bring the fire under control. There has been no personal injury or damage to property as a result of the fire.

"The advice from the fire and rescue service is for residents to keep windows and doors closed during the incident."

Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service said they were called to the landfill site at 5.05am following reports of a large waste fire.

Fire crews were mobilised to the scene from Calne, Devizes (two), Chippenham (two), Melksham and Trowbridge along with the Environmental Protection Unit from Gillingham, two water carriers from Wilton and Pewsey and the Command Support Unit from Stratton St Margaret.

On arrival, crews found approximately 40,000 tonnes of low-grade clinical waste and general household waste involved in the fire, as well as an additional 2,000 tonnes of tyre bales, and a significant smoke plume, heading towards the south of Calne.

DWFRS group manager Karen Adams said: "We are advising local residents to keep doors and windows closed due to the smoke in the area. 

"As this fire will be ongoing for a number of hours we will update the public with any concerns regarding the smoke should they arise.”

Firefighters are making good progress by working alongside the site contractors to smother the fire with soil.

As of 9am this morning, the incident was scaled back to three fire engines and one water carrier.

Plans will be formulated as the morning progresses to fully extinguish the fire which is likely to continue into the later part of today.