HUNDREDS of superheroes took the city by storm as Oxford Pride returned for another year.

Hordes of people lined the streets to watch Batman, Superman and Catwoman – and plenty more besides – walk hand-in-hand through the city centre for the finale of Oxford's biggest Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) festival.

The parade of comic book legends, in keeping with this year's festival theme 'We Can Be Heroes', set off from Radcliffe Square at midday, before a sea of rainbows swarmed through the heart of the city.

Zayna Ratty, a trustee of LGBT support group Oxford Friend, said the Oxford Pride event was the best the country had to offer.

She said: "I've gone to quite a few Pride events before and I can certainly say that Oxford is in a league of its own – if you want the best LGBT event come to Oxford.

"It's brilliant to know there are so many people here and that we are all supporting each other on such an amazing day."

Two carnival-themed dancers from Sol Samba lead the colourful crowds through Broad Street before turning into Cornmarket Street, past the Carfax Tower and ending at the Castle Quarter.

One of the Sol Samba dancers, Melanie Robin, said it was her first time at Oxford Pride and she thought it was a brilliant occasion.

She said: "This is our first time at this festival and we were invited here because we normally dance at Cowley Road Carnival.

"I think it is such a wonderful day because everyone is smiling and everyone is being friendly and happy with each other.

"To be honest, any day which means I put glitter and lipstick on first thing in the morning is an amazing one."

Singers, bands, dancers and choirs entertained festival-goers until the late evening, with prizes handed out for the best costume and best dressed couple.

Party-goers were able to continue the fun of the day into the night at one of the country's oldest gay pubs, The Jolly Farmers, which hosted a street party in Paradise Street until 10.30pm.

Matthew Evans, 16, from Faringdon, said he was disappointed his age was preventing him from joining others on the night out but said he thought the day was "one of a kind".

He said: "We live in such a rural area that often it's hard to get to see your friend, let alone anyone from the LGBT community.

"We've got to keep having this kind of event because it reminds you that you're not alone and there are other people out there who feel just like you and it gives us a chance to all have a lot of fun.

"This is the second time I've come along to Pride and I know I'll be coming along for years to come."