Hats off to more than 3,500 students old and young who are receiving their degrees from the University of York this week.

As their nearest and dearest watch, each, wearing academic robes, will step onto the platform in Central Hall on the Heslington campus to collect the formal document of their achievement.

Then they will celebrate their new status as graduate, doctor or holder of a diploma of higher education, such as nursing and midwifery students.

Among those receiving their degrees are Howard Peters, 71, of York, who received a PhD in environmental management and environmental economics and Clare Third, 22, of Ruddington near Nottingham, whose grandfather John Ramsden, 87, was stationed at Heslington Hall with the RAF in 1945.

“It is a very happy occasion," he said as she graduated with a BA in history yesterday. "I’m very proud to see Clare come through the university, because it brought back memories about what Heslington and the village around it was like before the university came.

The ceremonies began yesterday and will continue today and tomorrow.