Police have been alerted after a suspected barn fire turned out to be a squatters camp.
A passer-by on the Lower Rainham Road noticed smoke coming from some old stables and called the Kent Fire and Rescue at 8.18pm yesterday.
But when crews arrived they discovered a large group of homeless people had pitched up tents and started a camp fire inside.
One of the firefighters who attended said: "It wasn't out of control but the owner of the land was clearly fed up with them squatting there.
"We put out the fire and called the police who are now dealing with it."
The pump left at 8.56pm.