SHOPPERS in Didcot were greeted by live reindeer to launch a Christmas shopping night.

Real Reindeer, a firm previously based in East Hagbourne and run by Martin and Angie Flint, brought the animals to the town yesterday to give the shopping night at the Orchard Centre a festive feel.

Mrs Flint said: “The two reindeer we brought are called Oslo and Andres.

“Oslo is very friendly and loves meeting people.

“He has just lost his antlers so we brought the antlers along to show the children.

“The children’s faces light up when they see the reindeer.

Pauline Bucknall, a spokesman for the Orchard Centre, said: “Shops are staying open late and we thought it would be fun for families and children to see the reindeer.”

The reindeer came from a large herd in northern Sweden.

Mr and Mrs Flint, who are now based in Northamptonshire, maintain close links with Scandinavian reindeer herders to keep up-to-date with current thinking about looking after the animals.

Shops were open late and will open again late next Thursday in the run up to Christmas.