Children as young as three pulled on traditional gowns to get their scrolls at the University of Sunderland’s St Mary’s Childcare Centre.

And on hand to pass out the graduation certificates was University Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive Sir David Bell.

During the morning, the children sang songs and showcased some of the skills they had learned during their time at the nursery, including a song in French. They were then presented with a certificate and teddy.

Jen Boyce, Deputy Childcare Manager at the Nursery, said: “Our Ladybird Graduation has been a great success, both the children and their families have had a fantastic time celebrating.

“We are very proud of the children and everything that they have achieved. Everyone at St Mary’s Childcare Centre would like to wish the children every success and happiness in their next adventure.”

Sir David Bell said: “While currently a vice-chancellor, I never forget that my first leadership role was as a primary school headteacher. So, I am well used to little people sitting at my feet during a school assembly, only to realise that they are slowly undoing my shoelaces.

“I am pleased to say that there was none of that on the morning I attended the mini-graduations at the University’s nursery this morning.

“The children looked wonderful and behaved impeccably so I look forward to welcoming them to the University at some point in the future – although I do realise that I will be President Biden’s age then!”