The Queen meets carers and volunteers at Alnwick Castle
The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh have met thousands of carers and volunteers at Alnwick Castle.
They were greeted by the Duke and Duchess of Northumberland, Earl Percy, boxing champion Glenn McCrory and football hero Alan Shearer.
Around 8,000 volunteers and carers were invited to the Castle by the Duchess who is Lord Lieutenant of the county.
The Royal couple also opened the new Alnwick youth hostel during the visit.
Judith Brooks, of Bedlington-based People's Animal Welfare Service, said: "It is absolutely wonderful to meet the Queen.
"It doesn't happen to people like us who are in the background."
Former world cruiserweight champion Glenn McCrory, who now works with a number of voluntary organisations, and has been appointed deputy lieutenant of Northumberland, described the Queen as "a fabulous monarch".
The royal couple also had a walkabout through the town, greeting large crowds of people who had braved the showery weather.
The Queen was presented with flowers by 19-year-old David Mayne, from Blyth.
Afterwards, he said: "It's absolutely fantastic she is here. The turnout is amazing and it is testament to how people feel about her."