ONE of the most popular Christmas services at Salisbury Cathedral is being live streamed this year.

The family nativity service, which re-tells the Nativity story through a procession a gigantic puppets, a donkey and countless children dressed as shepherds, is regularly oversubscribed and this Christmas will be streamed live into the Chapter House on Christmas Eve.

To avoid disappointment and cater for the overspill, the cathedral management has decided to lay on the live streaming provided by the Christchurch based CPS Group, to allow as many people as possible to take part.

Sarah Rickett, the cathedral’s director of outreach and learning, who is responsible for the family service alongside the liturgy and music team, has this year commissioned three new ‘King’ puppets from puppet maker and artist Isobel Smith, which will join the ‘Mary’ and ‘Gabriel’ puppets created for the service last year.

Sarah said: “The Family Nativity is a joyful affair that embraces all ages, from nought to ninety. Inevitably there is a degree of organised chaos but it is wonderful to see all generations coming together to celebrate Christmas.

“Extending our reach beyond the confines of the Cathedral floor has long been an ambition of ours and I am delighted that it has finally come to fruition.”

This year donkey, Jilly, from Farmer Giles will be bringing her foal, Star, with her.

The service starts at 3.30pm and live streaming begins at the same time.

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