CHAINED-UP and screaming, children were led through Oxford city centre yesterday as part of a demonstration against human trafficking.

More than 40 youngsters were taken up High Street, through Cornmarket, and into Broad Street where a mock slave auction was held in front of astonished shoppers.

The teenagers, from St Gregory the Great and St Edward’s schools, were led by a ‘child catcher’ based on the character from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

Oxford Community Against Trafficking organised the piece of street theatre to raise awareness on UK Anti-Slavery and EU Anti-Trafficking Day.

Clarice Julianda, 16, a pupil at Cricket Road’s St Gregory the Great, said: “Hopefully it has made people aware that human trafficking happens everywhere.”

She said she was surprised to hear trafficking had happened in the city, adding: “It was quite a big shock, but it could happen anywhere.”

Josh Battaliou, 17, a drama student at St Edward’s School in Woodstock Road, added: “Oxford is an area where you wouldn’t expect it to happen, but it does occur.”