Fourth of July celebrations take place at Washington Old Hall

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Fourth of July celebrations have seen the star spangled banner of the United States raised in Washington.

More than 100 people of all ages turned out as Washington Old Hall, the ancestral home of America’s first president George Washington, played host to events organised in partnership by the National Trust, Friends of Washington Old Hall and Sunderland City Council.

Krysta Meikle, Thomas Clark and Mayor Alan Emerson  at the American Independence Day service at Washington Old Hall

Krysta Meikle, Thomas Clark and Mayor Alan Emerson at the American Independence Day service at Washington Old Hall

The day of events began with musical entertainment from City Swing and a welcome from the general manager at the National Trust, Mick Wilkes.

A reading from the Declaration of Independence was carried out by Thomas Crawford on behalf of Sunderland Youth Parliament before the United States flag was raised by a student from Washington School wearing the Washington Grey’s uniform of George Washington’s bodyguard

The singing of the American National Anthem then took place before “The Dream” a nation of all people by Martin Luther King was read by Rebecca Robinson from Monkwearmouth Academy Presentations on the theme of Aspiration then came from pupils at George Washington and John F Kennedy primary schools, Monkwearmouth Academy and Broadway Junior School.

Mayor of Sunderland, Councillor Alan Emerson, said: "We've had an amazing turnout today given that this is to celebrate another country's independence.

Braodway Junior School perform at the American Independence Day service at Washington Old Hall

Braodway Junior School perform at the American Independence Day service at Washington Old Hall

"It shows the great interest that Wearside people have in Washington DC and to celebrate at a fantastic place such as Washington Old Hall is just brilliant."

Mr Wilkes said: "This is a phenomenal event and I'm sure the people of American would be shocked and very pleased that there is so much warmth for their country from this corner of the city of Sunderland.

"This is a big day anyway but it's growing each year and we want to keep on growing it.

"Washington Old Hall could become a real cultural theatre for the city."

Raising the flag at  the American Independence Day service at Washington Old Hall

Raising the flag at the American Independence Day service at Washington Old Hall

American Independence Day service at Washington Old Hall

American Independence Day service at Washington Old Hall

Youngsters from John F Kennedy Primary School at the American Independence Day service at Washington Old Hall

Youngsters from John F Kennedy Primary School at the American Independence Day service at Washington Old Hall