PICTURE SPECIAL: Saints welcomed home to Northampton for victory parade with 30,000 crowd

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Thousands of people filled Northampton town centre to welcome home the newly crowned Aviva Premiership champions on Sunday.

An open-top bus containing the Northampton Saints players, who beat Saracens in a nail-biting final at Twickenham on Saturday, left Franklin’s Gardens at 12.30pm and headed down Weedon Road, up Horsemarket and into Gold Street.

The bus then travelled in to the town centre where tens of thousands of fans were waiting to celebrate the team’s double achievement of winning the league title and the Amlin Challenge Cup.

The event, which culminated with a stop outside The Guildhall, was the biggest in the town since the Olympic torch relay in 2012.

As well as posing for pictures on the bus, the players also walked around the Market Square with the trophies and shook the hands of the adoring fans.

Here are a selection of pictures from the event.

**Tomorrow’s (Thursday) print edition of the Chron will feature a 24-page picture supplement and a further 11 pages dedicated to the Saints in sport**