Firefighters have managed to prevent a fire at a school from spreading from the kitchen to the rest of the £5m building.

Seventeen children attending a summer school at Joseph Hood Primary School, in Whatley Avenue, Wimbledon Chase, had to be evacuated from the building after the fire broke out at around 12.30am today.

Twenty firefighters and four fire engines rushed to the school and a spokesman for the London Fire Brigade reported that 50 per cent of a kitchen on the ground floor of the building, which was formally opened last February, was alight. 

A fire brigade spokesman said this afternoon that the evacuation took place after the school's smoke alarms activated.

She said the fire had been extinguished by 1.50pm, no one was injured, and the kitchen had sustained just 20 per cent fire damage.

Posey Furnish, chair of governors and a parent at the school, rang the Wimbledon Guardian to confirm that damage to the building had been confined to part of the kitchen.

She said: "It was absolutely not a major blaze. 

"There was a fire in the kitchen that was dealt with in an hour.

"We think it was caused by an electrical fault. 

"There is a summer scheme being run at the school by an external company. The few children who were in the school at the time were out within minutes when the fire alarms went."

The cause of the fire is not yet known.