Roding Primary school fire: One of UK’s biggest primary schools engulfed in huge blaze

A huge blaze tore through one of the UK’s biggest primary schools a day before hundreds of students are due back, leaving the start of the autumn term in doubt.

Twelve fire engines and about 80 firefighters battled the inferno that swept through about half of Roding Primary School in Dagenham, east London.

It broke out just before 5am, destroying parts of the building and delaying pupils’ return.

Crews removed a gas cylinder from the building and were cooling it down amid fears it could explode. People who live nearby were told to keep their windows and doors closed as smoke lingered in the air.

An extension to the main building at the back of the grounds is reported to have been badly affected by the inferno.