Inspirational Reindeer Champions of 2022

Posted on the 16th December 2022

We would like to thank all our supporters who have spoken out on behalf of reindeer and other animals used in festive events this year. We are so grateful to everyone who has been in touch to tell us about events and those who have emailed event organisers to urge them to find more compassionate ways to celebrate Christmas.

Here are a few examples of the amazing ways our supporters have helped stop reindeer exploitation this year:

North East England 

North East Animal Rights (NEAR) with other animal rights groups and supporters in the area campaigned hard for several years against the use of camels in a local parade in South Tyneside. After camels were dropped from this event, NEAR have now turned their attention to the use of reindeer and other animals in festive events, in the North-East of England.  

After NEAR wrote to the organisers of the Dalton Park Reindeer Parade in 2021, this year, an artisan market took place, with no live animals in sight! Well done everyone! 

This year, NEAR have worked together with other groups again to contact event organisers in the Northeast of England explaining why events using live animals can cause distress to the animals involved. Of the events that they have contacted a few have agreed to consider alternatives for next year and Great North Winterland, decided to cancel the live reindeer at their event this year. 

NEAR have also attended events using live reindeer to gather footage of the animals and have organised positive outreach sessions to encourage the public to attend animal-free celebrations (See picture above).  


In November, Merseyside Animal Rights (AR) discovered that The Strand Shopping Centre in Merseyside were planning to use reindeer in their parade the following weekend. They contacted their local council, who owned the shopping centre, to object to these plans. They explained why these events can be distressing for reindeer and asked them to follow the lead of neighbouring council Knowsley, by adopting a policy which prohibits the use of live animals in events for entertainment. The council took the decision to cancel the reindeer the day before the event was due to take place. Great news for the reindeer! 

Merseyside AR also staged a peaceful protest outside Barney’s Bargains when they discovered there would be live reindeer at their event. It is very positive to learn from the protesters that the owners have now agreed to use animatronic reindeer in future events.  

The group has appeared in their local paper raising awareness of the suffering of reindeer used in festive events.

Merseyside AR

Merseyside Animal Rights Reindeer Demonstration

Great Yarmouth and Berkshire 

Two Animal Aid supporters launched separate petitions this year which challenged events using live animals, after their concerns were ignored by the organisers. It is encouraging to see how many other people share their concerns for the reindeer: 

Well done Caroline and Nic! 

How you can help reindeer 

Have these stories have inspired you to take action against a festive event using live animals in your area? If they have, please get in touch with 

Although it is heart-breaking to think of the needless exploitation of animals, if you are contacting event organisers, or speaking to them at an event itself, please do remain polite at all times. Thank you. 



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