AROUND 500 children from across London took part in a spectacular fancy dress party in the Mansion House on Saturday, hosted by a modern-day Dick Whittington, the Lord Mayor of London Alan Yarrow.

The children were able to experience the 18th-century State Rooms and palatial Egyptian Hall, where the Lord Mayor normally welcomes politicians, statesmen and financiers.

Councillors and mayors from the London boroughs were there, too.

The party was intended to welcome in the new year and share the rich history of the Mansion House and the City of London with young people from across the capital.

The usual formality was replaced with the excited noises of children, clowns, traditional party games and a live band.

The Lord Mayor even led a conga line, featuring all children and other guests.

They were served afternoon tea in the Old Ballroom and the party concluded with hundreds of balloons being dropped from the ceiling of the Egyptian Hall.