A Wearside-raised Coronation Street star was the guest of honour alongside characters from blockbuster films at a special Houghton Feast event.
Geek Feast, an indoor TV, movie, game and comic convention, took place at the town's sports centre.
There were stalls selling various items, a cosplay competition, appearances by characters such as Chewbacca, Stormtroopers and Kylo Ren from Star Wars as well as the Incredible Hulk.
Actor Melanie Hill, best known for playing Cathy Matthews in Manchester-based soap Coronation Street, took part in a Q&A session on her career, during which she discussed her appearances in Auf Wiedersehen, Pet, Bread and working with legendary Robert De Niro in 2007 film Stardust.
Organiser Paul Lanagan, who is chairman of Houghton Heritage Society, says that the event has been set up to help keep the Feast as popular as ever.
Melanie told the Echo: "Paul spoke to me about coming along and I was really happy to be involved.
"The people putting this together have all worked so hard and it's great seeing all of them in their costumes.
"It's really refreshing seeing how everyone comes together for the Feast.
"I know there are cosplay events in Manchester where I work, and even though I haven't been to one you can see they are really well-attended.
"With me being a big Sunderland fan, I used to go to a lot of games before but not as much now, so this has given me a chance to come back up home."
Paul added: "The Feast is in a time of change now and we need to do events like this could fund next year's Geek Feast too.
"It has gone even better than we could've hoped.
"A lot of us haven't had much sleep over the last few days but people have really pulled together.
"We've even had people come from Carlisle to help us with very professional-looking costumes and we can't thank them enough.
"Houghton Feast, right from its very beginning was about people coming together and 800 years later, the people of Houghton are still turning out like this for it.
"It's been brilliant and probably the best one in years."
The Feast comes to a close on Sunday, October 14.