COMIC book heroes and sci-fi fan favourites descended on Colchester for an explosion of costume-clad fun.

Invasion Colchester returned to the to town for the ninth time, bringing familiar characters and vehicles from everyone’s favourite shows and films.

Last year’s event raised more than £13,000, to be split between St Helena Hospice and the Cancer Centre Campaign.

This year hundreds of people flocked to the town to take part in and enjoy the spectacle.

Dozens of key characters from franchises including Star Wars, Ghostbusters, Harry Potter and the Marvel Universe were on hand to meet, greet and pose for pictures with fans.

Special guests included Clem So, Nick Joseph, Mike Edmonds, Martin Ballantyne and Sandeep Mohan, all of whom have worked on well-known TV shows and films.

Clem, who was on hand to meet fans and sign autographs, was a familiar face to many having featured in films including Fantastic Beasts, Jurrasic World, Star Wars spin-off Solo, Doctor Strange and Skyfall.

Prizes were won in a number of competitions, including fancy dress in Culver Square, a character hunt and a prize draw.

Firstsite hosted two cinematic screenings of classic 1985 sci-fi comedy Back To The Future.

There was even a chance of taking in the sight of a replica DeLorean Time Machine.

Other automobile attractions included the Batmobile, Ecto-1 from Ghostbusters and Optimus Prime from the Transformers franchise.

Organisers are still counting the cash raised throughout the Saturday event, but hope to match last year’s total.

Across eight years the event has raised £50,000 for the two causes.