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In pictures: Oxford Circus was brought to a halt by a giant balloon

James Manning

We love the Lumiere London festival, which brightens up London’s streets with light art installations every January. But yesterday one of the festival’s stars embarrassed itself by escaping and floating around Oxford Circus.

The giant white balloon came unstuck in high winds at rush hour yesterday evening, blowing about in a potentially dangerous manner over commuters’ heads. It was removed just after 10pm – not before one of London’s busiest crossroads had closed to traffic and buses had been put on diversion. Some Londoners compared it to the Death Star from ‘Star Wars’, others to the lethal white balloon from cult ’60s TV show ‘The Prisoner’. Here’s how it went down (no pun intended)…

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