One man has died and thousands have been evacuated from homes and holiday sites as a massive wildfire approaches the Spanish resort of Marbella.

Around 300 British expats are among those being moved, according to the Foreign Office.

Spain's countryside has been left bone dry after a summer heatwave leaving it particularly susceptible to fires.

malaga fire

The fire spread eight miles overnight

The blaze started on Thursday near Malaga and, fanned by strong winds, spread eight miles along the coast overnight.

More than 250 Firefighters and 17 planes have battled in vain to control the flames.

malaga fire

Planes have been used in an attempt to douse the flames

Angel Nozal, the mayor of Mijas, told El País: "The fire is horrific, with flames 10 to 15 metres high."

The only death so far occurred near the small town of Ojen where the body of an elderly man was found. He had apparently returned to his property after being evacuated.

Loading Slideshow...
  • A firefighting plane dumps water on a raging forest fire in Ojen, southern Spain

  • A firefighting helicopter dumps water on a raging forest fire in Ojen

  • Firefighters work amid smoke from a raging forest fire

  • Firefighters work to control a raging forest fire as trees are engulfed in flames next to a road in Ojen

  • A firefighter tries to control a raging forest fire in Ojen, southern Spain

  • A firefighter works amid smoke from a raging forest fire in Ojen

  • A firefighter holds a water conduit as he and others try to control a raging forest fire in Ojen