Resplendent in a fuchsia cashmere coat by Stewart Parvin and a jaunty matching hat by Angela Kelly, the Queen was wreathed in smiles as she arrived for the traditional Maundy Thursday service at Blackburn Cathedral.
Joined by a dapper Duke of Edinburgh, the monarch beamed as she was greeted by cheering crowds of well wishers and handed a posy of Spring blooms as she made her way into the 188-year-old building.
During the service, the Queen distributed bags of coins to a group of pensioners, continuing a royal tradition that is more than 800 years old.
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Elegant: The Queen was resplendent in a cerise cashmere coat by Stewart Parvin and a hat by Angela K
The original version of the Maundy Service involved the sovereign giving money to the poor and washing their feet, a tradition which ended with James II in the 18th century.
The custom of washing feet is an an ancient one and commemorates the last supper of Jesus with the Apostles, echoing the story of Christ washing the extremities of his disciples shortly before his death.
Although foot washing is no longer part of the ceremony, the tradition of giving 'alms' continues, albeit symbolically.
The Maundy gift, which the Queen handed to 88 men and 88 women - one for each of the Queen's 88 years - is made up of two purses, one red and one white.
In a ceremony full of pomp, Yeomen in red tunics carried the purses on golden platters, following the Queen as she distributed the money to the accompaniment of organ music and choristers singing God Save The Queen from Handel's Zadok The Priest.
Pomp: The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh pose with yeomen and schoolchildren in front of the cathedral
Imposing: The royal party stand with choristers and yeomen outside the cathedral, which was opened in 1826
Enjoying the day: The Queen accessorised her cerise ensemble with one of her trademark Launer bags
Recipient Alec Stuttard, 74, from Ewood in Blackburn, was especially pleased to receive the Maundy gift.
As a 13-year-old he was chosen to represent Blackburn Cathedral in the choir singing at the Queen's Coronation in 1953 - but was forced to pull out because of laryngitis.
Speaking about his meeting with the Queen, a delighted Mr Stuttard said: 'It was brilliant. The funny thing is as she came to give me the money the choir started to sing Zadok The Priest, which is what I would have sung at the Coronation. I was shaking.
Another recipient, James Nelson, 79, a former engineer, was chosen for his efforts in maintaining St Andrew's Church in Leyland, Lancashire.
'It was wonderful, just wonderful,' revealed Mr Nelson. 'A great honour and a very moving service, it's just a privilege to be here.'
Stanley Smith, 73, a retired salesman from Leyland who also received a purse from the Queen added: 'Today was just absolutely wonderful.
'The Queen looks absolutely immaculate and I feel so humble I was one of only 88 men chosen, it's something else, I am so honoured.'
This year the Red Purse contains a £5 coin, commemorating the 300th anniversary of Queen Anne's reign and a 50p coin commemorating the 20th Commonwealth Games in Glasgow this summer.
Historically, the Red Purse contained an allowance of £3 for clothing, £1.50 in lieu of provisions and £1 for the redemption of the Sovereign's gown.
The White Purse contains uniquely minted Maundy money. This takes the form of one, two, three and four silver penny pieces, the sum of which equals the number of years of the monarch's age.
Since her accession in 1952, the image of the Queen on ordinary circulating coinage has undergone three changes, but Maundy coins still bear the same portrait of Her Majesty prepared by Mary Gillick for the first coins issued in the year of her coronation in 1953.
The service ended with a trumpet fanfare and the national anthem before the procession left the cathedral, with the Right Reverend Julian Henderson, the Bishop of Blackburn, leading the royal party to the cathedral's Great West Door.
Following the service, in keeping with Royal Maundy tradition, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh met local rdignitaries during a reception at Blackburn Rovers Football Club.