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Monday 6 February 2023 Dublin: 3°C
Bonnie Devereux Lynch, then aged 4, at the Live Animal Crib outside the Mansion House in 2018.
# St Stephen's Green
Live animal Christmas crib gets the go ahead but in a new location
The event outside the Mansion House was cancelled last month but will go ahead in St Stephen’s Green.

THE LIVE ANIMAL crib in Dublin will make an appearance this Christmas in a new location.

The live animal crib has been located outside the Mansion House since 1995.

But last month, Dublin Lord Mayor and Green Party Councillor Caroline Conroy proposed that the live animal element of the crib be scrapped, partly due to animal welfare concerns. 

The move was described as “grinch-like” by some.

At the time, the Minister for the Office of Public Works Patrick O’Donovan said he was working to find a new location for the long running tradition

Today, it’s been announced that the event will return in the new location of the Summer House in St Stephen’s Green.

The live animal crib will return on 8 December and will feature a donkey, two sheep, and a goat.

A statement from the Office of Public Works (OPW) says the scene “captures the nativity story that unfolded in Bethlehem over two millennia ago”.  

The OPW also described the live animal crib as a “beloved institution for many, young and old”.

Following discussions with the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA), the OPW decided that St Stephen’s Green would provide “a calm setting for the farm animals and for families to bring their children to view the crib”.  

The OPW adds that “animal welfare is paramount” and that the shelter in the Summer House will be installed in line with the Farm Animal Welfare Advisory Council’s Guidelines.

“The animals will be tended to onsite every day by their owner and will return to their farm in Wicklow each afternoon,” said a statement from the OPW.

“Members of the public will not be able to enter the Summer House, but will be able to see the Live Crib from the external rails.”

Minister O’Donovan said he is delighted that the OPW and IFA were able to find a new location.

He said St Stephen’s Green provides “an appropriate, sheltered space for the animals and is easily accessible for the public”.

Meanwhile, IFA President Tim Cullinan described the live animal crib as “a central part of the pre-Christmas experience in Dublin” and thanked O’Donovan and the OPW for “their commitment to providing a location in St Stephen’s Green”.

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