WATCH: Great North Run: Thousands turn out to see Mo Farah defend his title and cheer on runners

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Thousands of people lined the Great North Run finishing straight in South Shields as Mo Farah defended his title.

The champion runner was the first of the elite men to complete the 13.1 mile course, running through the tape on the Leas, in South Shields.

The crowd erupted in cheers and applause as the Olympian set a personal best of 59mins 23secs – holding on to the title he first claimed last year.

But Mo was just one of more than 50,000 who took part in today’s event, the biggest of its kind in the world.

Thousands of running club members and charity fundraisers ran the course from Newcastle to South Shields as the sun shone across the North East.

Whether they were hoping to set a personal best or raise cash for their chosen cause, the runners were united in the half marathon.

Mo Farah crosses the finish line to win the Great North Run 2015

Mo Farah crosses the finish line to win the Great North Run 2015

They were cheered on by huge crowds along the route, who handed out water, sweets and moral support.

On the Leas, dozens of charity tents were set up to welcome and thank runners who took on the challenge on their behalf, and live music played as they made their way from the finish line.

Flying stuntman the Red Arrows also featured, showing off their skills and putting on colourful displays high above the crowds and runners over the Tyne Bridge and on the Leas.

Charity runners raised millions for local and national charities close to their hearts and hugged each other as they celebrated crossing the finish line.

First three finsihers in yesterday Great North Run including No1 Mo Farah with the crowd near the finish line

First three finsihers in yesterday Great North Run including No1 Mo Farah with the crowd near the finish line

Starting in Newcastle and going over the Tyne Bridge, an estimated 57,000 people made their way through Gateshead and onto the coast at South Shields.

Some of the celebrity names who took part included Professor Brian Cox, Olympic gold medallist James Cracknell, TV presenter Steph McGovern and former footballer Kevin Kilbane.

Last year it became the first mass participation run in the world to have its one millionth competitor cross the line.

Many competitors donned fancy dress costumes and a brass band was seen bringing up the rear.

Great North Run 2015

Great North Run 2015

It is expected around £25m will be raised by those taking part for charity.

Great North Run 2015

Great North Run 2015

Great North Run 2015

Great North Run 2015