MORE than 2,000 children from York and North Yorkshire have marched through the city in what is believed to be the biggest St George’s Day parade in the country.

Brownies, Guides, Cubs, Scouts, Sea Scouts and Explorers processed from the Eye of York, with banners flying in a display of music and, colour to mark the day of England’s national saint.

The city’s and county’s Beavers and Rainbows were already waiting at York Minster.

They were considered too young to take part in the initial parade - the youngest was five years old.

But they joined the rest of the children for the return journey to the Eye of York.

Among the dignitaries who were waiting for the parade at the cathedral were the Lord Mayor of York, Cllr Keith Orrell, heading the entire York Civic Party, and county and district commissioners from the Scout and Guide Movements.

The parade was so long it took 20 minutes to process into the Minster when it arrived and included three marching bands.

The Yorkshire Volunteers led the way behind a single policeman who ensured that the roads were cleared for them.

Crowds lined the route and applauded the children.

At the Minster, the children with their VIP guests took part in a combined St George’s Day and Founder’s Day service, led by Rev Francis Loftus.

For one group of marchers, the day was particularly special. After the service, 1st Heworth Scouts group were presented with a Commendation from North Yorkshire Police for 100 years’ of service to the community.

On the return journey, the children marched past the saluting base on Duncombe Place, similar to that in Freedom of the City parades.