Hundreds of people descended on an East Oxford street to celebrate the flamboyant spirit of carnival.

It was the second time the Plain Traders' Association had organised the Mardi Gras party in Dawson Street, off Cowley Road.

But this year, instead of attracting about 150 people, up to 800 people took part in the merriment last Saturday evening.

Erica Steinhauer, of Plain Traders' and the owner of Bead Games, Sweet Heaven and fancy dress shop 1001 Bohemian Nights, said the event had been a huge success.

She said: "There were so many traders and residents it was amazing. We had a local music group playing, who got everybody dancing, and it was beautiful.

"The neighbours were happy and there was no disturbance at all."

Ms Steinhauer said the success of the event, held in a Bedouin-style tent, had secured its future and she hoped it would next year expand beyond Dawson Street to include establishments along the Cowley Road.

She said: "Without a doubt it will now be an annual event. I'm starting to talk to local businesses to look at some proper structure.

"Everyone was very thrilled and I think they are quite interested in the idea of each business doing its own theme with a core at Dawson Street."

Revellers were asked to "be masked, be feathered, be jewelled and be there", and Ms Steinhauer estimated about 50 people got fully dressed up in flamboyant Mardi Gras style.

A pageant of the best outfits was held and prizes, given by local businesses, were awarded for the most imaginative costumes.

The event was held in aid of the Warneford Meadow Action Campaign and a total of £250 was raised.

Ms Steinhauer said future events would also be charitable and support local causes and she hoped to increase the amount of cash raised for next year's party.