The Ashridge Business School may be used to the exchange of information, but it facilitated a transaction of a rather different kind last week.
On Wednesday, one of the giant beech trees in the institution’s grounds collapsed due to old age and disease.
While the main bulk of it was collected by the National Trust, the remaining branches were taken by special delivery to nearby ZSL Whipsnade Zoo.
Some of the foliage was used as a perfectly good and tasty treat for the giraffes on Friday, and the leftovers will be made into silage to help with the winter feed for many of the attraction’s animals.
Far from being a tall story, the tale is just the latest in a long-running agreement between the two unlikely partners.
Marketing manager at Ashridge House Dolores Kelly said: “We’ve been working with Whipsnade for a number of years.
“In the past we have provided them evergreen oak, which is also useful for them.
“It is a good working relationship because our gardeners are clearing the grounds here all the time, and rather than chip it all, it is great that we can help with the zoo’s enormous feeding requirements.”
Meanwhile at Whipsnade, a new ‘Meet the Animals’ visitor experience was launched earlier this week.
The unique encounters will allow lucky guests to go behind the scenes and get up close and personal with some of the zoo’s most popular creatures – including the giraffes, as well as elephants, sloth bears and lions.
Prices start at £45 and tickets are available online now at www.zsl.org/experiences.
The money raised from the ticket sales will be used to help support the zoo’s conservation efforts around the world.