Dorchester Agricultural Society (DAS) has announced Alastair Cowen as its new president and Peter Clark as the society’s deputy president for 2018.

Alastair and Peter will begin their new roles at Dorchester Agricultural Society’s AGM which takes place this week at Kingston Maurward College.

The society was formed in 1840 and is responsible for organising some of Dorset’s most recognisable agricultural events, including Dorset County Show, which attracts 60,000 people across the two-day event, taking place on September 1 and 2, 2018.

Alastair has extensive knowledge of the society, having been the deputy president for the past two years. He has also been involved with the Dorset County Show for the past 30 years. Alastair was a partner in the land agency firm ‘Symonds & Sampson’ in Dorchester until he retired in 2016, and was honorary land agent for DAS.

Alastair Cowen, President of Dorchester Agricultural Society, said: “Being elected as president of DAS is an honour and a real privilege. I am very grateful to everyone who has supported me in my new role and I look forward to continuing to work with the fantastic team behind the show.

“One of the initiatives I have taken responsibility for over the years is expanding our charity work and I am pleased to have helped to set up the 1840 Education Fund three years ago. The fund aims to provide local children with knowledge in agriculture, horticulture and other rural enterprises and this is something I am very passionate and proud of.”

Peter Clark originally joined DAS in 2009 as vice-chair and progressed to chairman in 2011, but has been involved with the show for more than 25 years. Peter formed a pig farming committee and was the pig chairman for several years and is now once again back in this role for the 2018 Dorset County Show. Peter is also the current mayor of Blandford and chairman of the town’s council.

Peter Clark, deputy president of Dorchester Agricultural Society, explains: “I have always supported the show in many ways and will continue to do so in my new role. I believe the show has many great committees who all strive for it to be a continued success. I am really proud to work alongside Alastair and the rest of the team as deputy president and look forward to what promises to be another triumphant year for the Dorset County Show.”

Throughout the year, DAS also hosts their Spring Show as well as a flock competition, sheep dog trials and a ploughing match. Please visit for more information about these events.