More than 200 sheep were evacuated from a Birmingham abattoir as flames ripped through the building.

The severe blaze, at Mr Meats Wholesale warehouse on Adelaide Street in Highgate, caused chaos as 19 fire engines and an aerial appliance were called to the site on Saturday.

It is believed that there were no injuries caused to the animals, despite them being moved out of the smoke-laden warehouse into an adjacent building on the road. However about 30 per cent of the abattoir was severely damaged by the fire and the whole building was affected by the smoke.

West Midlands Fire Service Group Commander Nigel Sowden said it was a ‘very severe’ fire that needed specialist equipment to control it.

“Investigations are on-going into the cause of the fire,” he added.

Firefighters were called to the site at 7.55pm on Saturday evening and didn’t leave until 1pm on Sunday.