THE Mayor of Sunderland did the honours as this year’s Houghton Feast’s ox roast took centre stage.
Councillor Stuart Porthouse carved the animal before sandwiches were sold to raise money for charities in the area.
The ox roast dates back to the days of rector Bernard Gilpin in the 16th century.
After the roast, the annual fireworks spectacular, organised by the Showmen’s Guild of Great Britain’s Northern Section, were launched at Durham Road Playing Fields in front of hundreds of spectators.
Houghton Feast activities continue today with an exhibition by Houghton Art Club at the town’s Methodist Church.
Tonight, She’s Fired, a musical drama set against the backdrop of the 1880 Seaham Mining Disaster, plays at St Michael and All Angels Church, in The Broadway.