Blackbird Leys enjoyed its most successful fair yet as over 3,000 people enjoyed its delights in Saturday's sunshine.

Laughter and smiles were the order of the day for the Leys Fair 2006 - and organisers said it showed the positive side of an area rather than its negative reputation.

The fair was revived seven years ago, and with a bumper turnout inside the leisure centre and in the adjoining park, organiser Natalie Huckin said it was the best yet.

Mrs Huckin said: "It was a great success, helped of course by the weather. A lot of hard work went into the planning, and the fair was a tribute to all those who put so much effort into it.

"Our thanks to the people of Blackbird Leys for turning out in strength.

"What the fair showed was that there is a lot of good in this community despite its reputation over the years. We can make it a success. Things are getting better although there is still work to be done if Blackbird Leys is to shake off its poor image."

The image problem could be found at the fair. There were "Good, Bad and the Ugly" lists at the police Neighbourhood Action Team (Nat) stall for people to mark down what they felt were problems on the estate.

Topping the Bad list was drugs, followed by antisocial behaviour, speeding cars, vandalism and mini- mopeds.

On the Good list was improved policing, shops, the youth centre, leisure centre, buses, library, doctors and dentists.

Police Community Support Officer Jacqui Harris said: "Like many communities, Blackbird Leys has its share of problems, made worse by a reputation built up many years ago and which is hard to shake off.

"But a lot of money, time and effort has been spent here in recent years and we are beginning to see the benefits.

"And the important thing is a community spirit is beginning to thrive."

Paul Isaacs, who has helped organise the last four Leys Fairs, said: "Blackbird Leys is nothing compared with some of the estates in big cities. I know from experience in London. The Leys is making progress.

"You've only got to look around the Fair to see community involvement with people enjoying themselves.

"The fun and laughter is a great tonic."