CLAIMS reindeer primed to tow Santa into town are being “exploited” have been dismissed by the organisers.
On Saturday Wrexham Council has arranged for Santa to arrive in town. He will travel around the town centre on a sleigh pulled by reindeer.
But the chairman of charity Cruelty Free Christmas has hit out at the arrangements.
Jonathon Proctor said he finds it “absolutely abhorrent” the council is using reindeer in the parade parade.
“Animals are not ours to use and abuse as we see fit, to be exploited for our entertainment,” he said.
“It may be enjoyable for people to see but it is frightening and extremely stressful for the animals.
“We see these events as outdated and morally wrong.”
Hundreds of people are expected to meet the antlered animals at the festive event tomorrow, which has been arranged on one of the busiest shopping days of the year.
The council rebutted the animal rights advocate’s claims, insisting the reindeers have been well looked after.
A spokesman said: “The reindeers being taking part in the Christmas parade are from a local and fully licensed park.
“The reindeer are in very good health as the park has to comply with the high standards and guidelines set by DEFRA.
“The reindeer will also be well looked after on the day by two experienced members of staff from the park.”
The parade is due to set off from Lambpit Street at 11.30am. The sleigh will go across Queens Square, pass under the Argyl Arch, turn left onto Hope Street, left onto High Street and then left again onto Chester Street.
Santa’s grotto will be open inside the People’s Market from noon until 4.30pm on Saturday.