COLCHESTER showed it knows how to party as thousands attended three concerts over the weekend.

The Concerts at the Castle kicked off on Friday evening, when crowds were entertained with some top-notch funk and soul, performed by the Real Thing and the Edwin Starr Band.

On Saturday, more than 5,000 turned out to the second Castle Park concert, featuring hits from the Blues Brothers Tribute band before soul singer Lemar kept the party going with songs including Dance With You.

He was followed by headliner Ali Campbell, who sang many of his UB40 classic hits, including Red Red Wine and Can’t Help Falling in Love With You, which went down a storm.

A spectacular firework display rounded off both shows.

Hundreds more people turned out to Afternoon Tea in the Park yesterday, when the National Symphony Orchestra played classical favourites.

Families made the most of the sunshine and soaked up the atmosphere while they tucked into picnics.

Aspiring opera singers in the audience got the chance to join in, with words printed in their programmes so they could sing along to the classics.

James Owers, production director, said: “The atmosphere was magical and everyone had a great time, there was a real party atmosphere.

“I have had lots of positive comments. I would like to say a big thank you to everyone who has supported us.”