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Last Updated: Wednesday April 06 2011 13:55 GMT

Rescued circus elephant settles in at new home

Anne the elephant

Rescued elephant's new life

An elephant rescued from a circus after it was filmed being beaten by a worker, is settling in well at her new home.

Undercover footage showed Anne the elephant being kicked and hit by a man working at Bobby Roberts Super Circus.

Anne, who's thought to be 57 years old, has now moved to Longleat Safari Park - and she appears to love her new home.

The park's Jonathan Cracknell said: "She's an old girl but she was playing like a calf yesterday. It's an amazing thing to see."

Moira Roberts, who runs the circus with her husband Bobby and their family, said they reacted with "shock and horror" when they saw the footage of Anne being abused.

She said they knew nothing of what was going on, adding that the groom employed to care for the animal had left the circus overnight.

"We wish we had been given the opportunity to prosecute him and hand him over to the police," she said.

The RSPCA is investigating the incident which was secretly filmed by an animal rights group.

Worries about circus animals

Animals like Anne and have been a popular part of circus entertainment for hundreds of years - they used to be much more common than they are now.

But increasingly people have started to worry about how they were looked after.

There are already laws about how the animals need to be cared for - they must have regular food and water and enough space.

And since Anne's mistreatment has come to light - the campaign to ban all animals from circuses is growing in strength and the government are seriously looking into banning it.