Firefighters have issued a warning after the glare of the sun reflected from a mirror and set fire to curtains.

Crews from East Grinstead and Crawley were called to the terraced house in East Street in Turners Hill at 11.25 this morning after a make-up mirror on a bedroom table reflected sunlight onto the curtains which smouldered and then caught light.

Fortunately, the property was fitted with a working smoke detector and although the occupier was out at the time a neighbour heard the detector activating and raised the alarm.

On arrival fire crews wearing breathing apparatus entered the house and quickly put the fire out using a hose reel and carbon dioxide extinguisher, preventing the fire from spreading to the rest of the property.

Keith Lanaway, crew commander from East Grinstead Fire Station, said: "This may sound like a freak incident, but it isn't the first time our fire service has attended a fire starting in this way.

“Our advice is, wherever possible; make sure mirrors and glass ornaments are not positioned in strong sunlight or on windowsills."