THE saga of Carlisle's pop-up park animals has entered a new phase, with the return of the dog and the duck being counterbalanced by the unfortunate severing of the hare's remaining ear.

The new park, adjacent to the Old Town Hall, was designed to 'provide opportunities for individuals and families to relax, eat, drink and socialise whilst in the city centre with additional seating'.

However, the controversial government funded pop-up park saw disruption on April 20 this year after damage to some of the model animals led to their removal.

Traders nearby noticed the damage and spoke of the damage being done.

But police said the damage was not criminal, and one trader, Carol Crawford of Brewed Awakenings, said it wasn’t vandals, but teenagers who were playing on the animals.

READ MORE: Thugs Bunny - Council takes props away from park following damage

She said: "It's very popular and is brilliant for young children, unfortunately when teenagers start playing with it they're standing on the back of the dog and they're quite unruly with it, so it was never going to last."

Responding to the damage at the time, she said: "£50,000 is a lot of money to spend on the temporary arrangement to then lift it later in the year, they say they're going to re-use it, I don't believe for one second it's going to be in any condition to re-use."

Recently the missing animals, the dog and the duck, which were taken in after they were damaged, have made a reappearance.

The pair are again present with no visible damage, but the hare has lost its second ear, with no sign of when it will be repaired yet.

Speaking when the park was created, a Carlisle City Council spokesperson said: "The Welcome Back Fund supported local authorities to develop plans for responding to the medium-term impact of Covid-19 including trialling new ideas, particularly where these relate to the High Street.

"The funding could only be used for non-permanent public realm adaptations to boost the look and feel of the high streets.

"The items making up the temporary installation have been designed and procured in such a way that they can be re-used elsewhere in the city centre or on council green spaces as required."

READ MORE: Carlisle's new pop-up park prompts outcry