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Dunedin City Council community services general manager Simon Pickford said Covid-19 restrictions meant large public events in the Octagon were not possible this year, so the annual lighting of the tree would be videoed by council staff and posted online on December 9.
Mr Pickford hoped the video would still bring a little bit of Christmas cheer to delight Dunedin’s "youngest residents".
The tree will remain in the lower part of the Octagon until just before New Year's Eve.