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Beacons lit at Alnwick Castle to help celebrate Queen’s birthday

One of the beacons at the top of the Barbican at Alnwick Castle. Picture by Steve Miller
One of the beacons at the top of the Barbican at Alnwick Castle. Picture by Steve Miller

Two beacons have been lit at Alnwick Castle this afternoon to mark the Queen’s 90th birthday.

The Duke and Duchess of Northumberland attended the event as the beacons were lit on top of the Barbican and the couple chatted to the crowds of patriotic townsfolk who turned out for the occasion. There was a band and mulled wine and sausages were served to the spectators, as God Save the Queen and Happy Birthday were sung.

The Duke and Duchess attended the event. Picture by Steve Miller

The Duke and Duchess attended the event. Picture by Steve Miller

It was part of a wide-range of celebrations taking place in north Northumberland to honour the Royal milestone. Tonight, well-wishers will gather in various communities as part of a nationwide celebration of the Queen’s commitment to Britain and the Commonwealth, with the lighting of more than 1,000 beacons across the country and abroad.

Amble is hosting an event from 6pm to 8pm on The Braid. There will be music from local band Come Together and a collection for Amble RNLI’s Shannon Lifeboat Appeal. The beacon will be lit at 7.30pm.

Ford and Etal’s beacon at Watchlaw will be lit at the same time, with refreshments from 6.45pm, in exchange for a donation to the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution.

Morpeth’s beacon will be lit at 7.30pm at Ha’ Hill. In Berwick, the beacon at Windmill Bastion on the Elizabethan Walls will be lit at 8pm and the Royal Border Bridge will be illuminated red, white and blue from 9.30pm.

The band performed at this afternoon's event. Picture by Steve Miller

The band performed at this afternoon's event. Picture by Steve Miller

Meanwhile, The Oddfellows Arms, in Alnwick, is commemorating the milestone by running an unusual offer – giving free drinks to anyone who is aged 90 or over.

Oddfellows landlord Geoff Dade said: “Turning 90 is really something to celebrate, so we’ve decided that anyone who is the same age as the Queen or older should drink for free on her birthday.

“We’re also serving afternoon tea in exchange for donations to HospiceCare North Northumberland and have some great British cocktails and flavoured gins.”

Anyone wanting to take advantage of the free drinks offer must prove their date of birth with ID – or a letter from mum! – shown to pub staff.