The chief executive of the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society, David Walters, is to leave the society after 36 years in service.
Mr Walters told the society’s board of directors that he wishes to step down when he reaches retirement age next May.
In a statement Mr Walters said: “I feel the time has come for me to make way for a younger person to take over the reins. Running the society will demand the energy and drive of a younger person at the helm so that it will continue to thrive and go on to future success.”
In a statement the society board said his decision to retire was being accepted with reluctance. A spokesperson for the society said: “His overall contribution to the success of the society is immeasurable and the directors are reluctant to accept his decision to leave. However, we recognise this is his personal decision and he will take with him our sincere thanks for all he has done and our best wishes for a long and happy retirement.”
Mr Walters joined the society in 1976 after graduating from Aberystwyth University and has spent virtually his entire working life with the organisation. He was appointed as secretary to the society in 1978 and became chief executive in 1984.
In addition to his work for the Royal Welsh he is honorary secretary Wales of the Council for Awards for the Royal Agricultural Societies, that recognises those who have made outstanding contributions to the farming industry. He was also awarded an OBE for services to agriculture in Wales in 2007.