For the past four years the goat has survived Christmas: the last time the decoration burned was in 2016. Since then the goat has been kept with fences, cameras and 24/7 surveillance. / 7.
But today, it turned out badly again: the straw goat caught fire and only the metal frame remains:
A 40-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of arson. He denies having anything to do with the burnt goat, but police say he had soot on his hands when he was arrested.
The Gävlebocken is an initiative of the municipality to attract visitors. A goat is an ancient Scandinavian Christmas symbol that used to give gifts before Santa Claus made his appearance.
Tradition to destroy
The straw goat is 13 meters high and weighs three tons. Since 1966, the goat has been placed in the center of Gävle every year. Since then, it has been a tradition to try to destroy the goat by setting it on fire, destroying it or hitting it with a car.
The Christmas symbol has been reconstructed several times, only to catch fire again. The goat will be rebuilt again this year, say the initiators on the Goat’s twitter page.
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