Youngsters in a Wearside youth band got the chance to play one of the country’s most prestigious venues.
Houghton Area Youth Band took to the stage at the Royal Albert Hall in London as part of the Music for Youth Proms event.
The group performed at The Sage Gateshead in February as part of the Music for Youth regional series, and then the nationals at Birmingham Symphony Hall in the summer.
The band impressed judges so much, they were one of only two established youth bands in the country to be chosen to play at the Royal Albert Hall.
Catherine Alderson, whose daughter Molly, 12, is part of the group, said the young people were overjoyed to have been able to experience playing at the venue.
“It was totally awe-inspiring but they took it all in their stride, said Catherine.
“Nothing fazed them and they thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
“Obviously it was tiring for them having to travel down on the Sunday and come back on the Tuesday, but they acquitted themselves very well and did us proud.
“They’re a great bunch of kids who have represented the area well and showed such maturity.”
Houghton Area Youth Band, which currently has more than 40 members, was formed in September 1973 for children aged between six and 18-years-of-age to meet on a weekly basis in order to make music.
This year has been a memorable one for the band, achieving its best ever result at the 2016 Action Medical Research, getting fifth place at the Youth Entertainment Championships in Blackpool and first in entertainment and third overall against some of the best youth bands in the country.
The band also won the Youth sections at DCBBA Brass Band Festival, DLI and Stanley Entertainment contests as well as the Beamish March and Hymn Contest.
Rehearsals for the band take place at Hetton Lyons Primary School each Saturday from 10am to noon.