FIRE crews have this morning battled to save a sports club for the disabled after its roof went up in flames.

Around 40 fire fighters were called to the Gosport and District Sports and Disabled Association are around 1.30am today.

They used an aerial ladder and 16 sets of breathing apparatus as they fought to contain the fire, which had broken out in the flat felt roof of the 13m x 24m single-storey building.

Around half of the Elson Road property was damaged in the dramatic blaze, which was tackled by teams from Gosport, Fareham, Cosham, Southsea, Portchester, Wickham, Hightown and Eastleigh.

Investigations are underway this morning to determine the cause of the fire.

Station Manager Paul Coates, the officer in charge, said: "The fire started on the roof of the L-shaped building but with some aggressive fire fighting we managed to control and contain the spread of the flames.

"Much of the building has been saved and the crews deserve a lot of credit for their quick and effective actions."