ELEPHANTS have warmly welcomed new trunks into their enclosure at Chester Zoo

Cheshire East Council has branched out into helping the Asian pachyderms – by donating sawn-up sections of four mature trees for them to play with.

The two elms, one cherry and one maple, which topped 45ft, were felled during clearance work at the former Royal Mail site beside Crewe Rail Station, which is undergoing the first phase of a £6m overhaul.

The scheme, a vision called All Change for Crewe, is central to ambitious council-backed plans to revitalise and regenerate the town and surrounding area.

Instead of burning or binning the felled trees the Council followed its own recycling message – with a little creative thinking – and offered the large chunks of timber to the 10 elephants at Chester Zoo.

Cllr Jamie Macrae, Cheshire East Council cabinet member in charge of prosperity and economic regeneration, said: “We believe passionately about reducing waste and encouraging greater recycling. These felled trees seemed too good a resource to simply shred and both the zoo and the elephants were really pleased with our donation.”