Oxford's Cowley Road Carnival makes comeback

Cowley Carnival About 600 people are taking part in a procession

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Thousands of people attended a street carnival in Oxford as it returned after a year off.

Cowley Road Carnival was cancelled last year as it fell on the same weekend the Olympic torch passed through the area and its proximity to Jubilee events.

Part of the road was closed to traffic from 08:00 and a procession featuring about 600 participants started at 14:15.

The free event has been boosted by a council grant in a three-year deal.

The volunteer-run carnival began in 2001 as part of the regeneration of the Cowley Road area, however a lack of funds led to it being held at South Park rather than on the road in 2011.

Carnival director Danielle Battigelli said staging the event costs about £80,000.

'Positive side'

Oxford City Council has committed to providing £30,000 a year for the next three years to help ensure its future.

Ms Battigelli said she hoped the good weather could bring out at least 30,000 people for the event.

"We have good reason to expect to see a similar number of people than in 2011," she added.

"What has been really good this year is the council agreeing to [help funding] for three years - it gives us confidence in the future.

"[The carnival] is an opportunity to show the positive side of Cowley Road and bring people together to do positive things."

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