RESIDENTS are busy preparing to bring a splash of festive colour to their Oxford estate.

Rose Hill residents have teamed up with artists to turn their houses into Christmas light spectaculars.

The lights aim to express a story or interesting fact about each family. They will be switched on next SaturdayDecember 15 - with a procession around the estate.

The Art in Rose Hill scheme is the brainchild of Modern Art Oxford and artists Katy Beinart and Jo Huyg, who want to get more people in Rose Hill feeling positive about their neighbourhood.

Ms Beinart has already run the successful Alternative Bus Tour event, which gave residents an open-top bus ride around Oxford with historical anecdotes thrown in.

Ms Huyg said: "I live in Rose Hill and have been fascinated with Christmas lights for a long time. I love the idea of using your house as a canvas, it's a very popular and public form of art."

As well as residents, Rose Hill Primary School and the youth club are also taking part in the project.

Kirsty Kelso, head of marketing at Modern Art Oxford, said "We are hoping it will provide something that people of all ages can get together to feel positive about.

"Rose Hill doesn't always get the best press and is the subject of a dispersal order. Obviously, it's seen as a place with some problems. We want to contribute to a more positive experience on the estate."

Two special evenings will celebrate the lighting up of the displays.

The first takes place from 5pm on Friday December 7, at Modern Art Oxford, in Pembroke Street - part of Oxfordshire's White Night celebrations, marking the end of the county's millennium.

Next Saturday, members of the public are invited to join a walking tour of the lights, starting from The Oval in Rose Hill at 4pm.