A TUMBLE dryer sparked a a major fire which gutted a west Reading home in the early hours of the morning.

The utility room at the shared accommodation was completely destroyed by the blaze which broke out at 2.30am.

Three men and a woman were woken by the sounds of a fire alarm as firefighters rushed to Curzon Street by West Reading train station.

Crew manager Steve Whiteside from Caversham Road fire station said they were lucky the fire alarm was working.

"The fire 100 per cent damaged the utility room and the rest of the house was damaged by the smoke, it got everywhere," he said.

"Four occupants evacuated the property safely because of the alarm.

"Caversham Road and Dee Road fire stations were in attendance it it took about an hour and a half to extinguish.

"The message is don't leave appliances on overnight."

The fire crews used breathing apparatus and a hose reel as they battled the blaze.