IT is Oxford’s annual dose of bright lights and scary rides that marks the coming of autumn.

The St Giles’ Fair opens today at 10.30am, with organisers expecting to see 100,000 revellers flock to the historic street event over the next two days. It has been held since at least the 1600s.

While offering rollercoaster rides for thrillseekers, the fair is sticking to tradition with attractions like a carousel, dodgems and a coconut shy.

The city centre street is also hosting a large ferris wheel for the first time since the mid-1980s.

Oxford City Council fair co-ordinator Mike Newman said the annual event marked the end of summer.

He said: “It looks good when it’s dark and all the lights are shining.

“It wouldn’t be so spectacular if it took place in the middle of summer.”

As a result of the fair, Magdalen Street and St Giles’ will be closed until about 6.30pm on Wednesday. Buses will be diverted.

People attending St Giles’ fair have been warned to be wary of thieves and pickpockets by Thames Valley Police .