MORE than 1,800 people flocked to the grounds of Southampton mapmaker Ordnance Survey as bosses threw a massive party to thank their staff.

Revellers soaked up the sun as they basked in an afternoon off work to celebrate the mapping agency's first five years as a government trading fund.

Company directors even got into the mood for Euro 2004 at the OS grounds in Romsey Road, when they took on staff in a game of human table football.

Youngsters from the on-site nursery led by a life-size Yogi bear headed out on a sponsored toddle and staff and their families tucked into the free barbecue.

Circus performers, a magician, juggling experts and a four-piece band added to the carnival atmosphere as the celebrations headed into the evening.

Director general and chief executive Vanessa Lawrence said: "Our staff have worked extremely hard over the past five years and as a result we have seen much success.

"We are taking the chance to say a big thank you to everyone for their tremendous efforts and resulting achievements."

Ordnance Survey became a trading fund, which means it is financed through sales and data licensing rather than direct funding from the taxpayer, in 1999.