Celebrations broke out all over North Yorkshire today as the county saluted the Queen Mother on her 100th birthday.

As the Queen Mother celebrated with the royal family and thousands of fans in London, the carnival atmosphere spread to York and North Yorkshire where parties began early.

Many householders stocked up on Union flags and decked their homes with bunting before settling down to watch the London festivities on television.

Others, who share their birthdays with the Queen Mother, arranged special parties themed around the big event.

In York city centre a day-long programme of events began at 10.30am when the musicians of The King's Division Waterloo Band struck up outside the Minster.

They played a fanfare based on the traditional "Oranges and Lemons" tune to herald the first ringing of six new bells installed to honour the Queen Mother's centenary which have been the subject of a public appeal.

The civic procession was led through Duncombe Place to the Museum Gardens where the band continued to play until a 21-gun royal salute took place at noon.

Between 1pm and 4pm an afternoon of party in the park entertainment from other bands was set to take place in the Museum Gardens.

Meanwhile, in other parts of the York area Margaret Horsley, from Newton-on-Derwent, had organised a party in the village community centre for 20 children.

Lillian Wallace, warden of Honeysuckle House sheltered housing scheme, York, held a garden party for 60 people.

The 330 residents of Botton Village community on the North York Moors, near Danby, a centre for adults with special needs, rang a 100-note peal on their set of four octave handbells. They invited other people to have a go at the price of a donation to the York Minster Bells Appeal which has now reached the £129,000 mark.

Florence Watkinson, whose granddaughter Antonia, an Osbaldwick County Primary School pupil, celebrates her fifth birthday today, said a lavish party had been arranged for tomorrow in honour of their joint celebration.

She said: "You'd think royalty was com-ing the amount of things they're doing."