A man and woman have been rescued from a blaze started by candles.

The couple, both in their 30s, fled from their bedroom to the attic at the house in Pickles Lane, Great Horton, early yesterday morning after smelling smoke.

The fire had started in the front room after lit candles ignited curtains nearby which then fell in flames onto a sofa, said watch manager Anthony Williams from Odsal Station.

Emergency operators got a call from the house occupants at 5am and told the pair to shut themselves in the attic, using bedding to block gaps around the door to keep out smoke.

When crews from Bradford and Odsal Station arrived they had to force their way in through the front door and were confronted with pitch black, acrid smoke, said Mr Williams.

Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus tackled the downstairs fire while other crew members made their way up the stairs in absolute darkness to reach the terrified couple.

The couple were led back downstairs to safety and taken out the back door into the garden where paramedics were waiting.

The man, 32, and the woman, 34, were given oxygen therapy at the scene for smoke inhalation before being taken to Bradford Royal Infirmary for checks.

Crews and fire investigators were at the scene until just before 7.30am. Neighbouring terraced houses were also checked to make sure they were and no fire or smoke had spread.

Mr Williams said: “The couple were fortunate they woke up when they did and smelled the smoke otherwise the consequences would have been very different.

“They did the right thing and did as they were advised by our operator who was on the line with them throughout the whole incident.

“Our fire investigators have been at the scene and found it was started by candles that had ben left burning close to curtains which caught fire and then fell on to a sofa which then went up.

“There were smoke detectors in the house but they were not working - there could have been a very different ending to this.”

For fire safety advice or to have a free fire alarm fitted, contact West Yorkshire Fire Service on 0800 5874536.