A MAJOR Somerset dairy show - due to mark its 40th anniversary this year - has been cancelled.

The Royal Bath & West Society has announced the cancellation of the 2020 Dairy Show, which was set to take place on October 7, due to the ongoing global coronavirus pandemic.

The Society said it made the 'extremely difficult' decision in light of the recent rise in confirmed Covid-19 cases across the country and that it was the 'responsible thing to do' as restrictions around mass gatherings continue.

The next Dairy Show will be held on 6th October 2021, it confirmed.

Alan Lyons, head of shows at the Royal Bath & West Society, said: “Obviously we are hugely disappointed to be taking this decision today, and to have to cancel one of the key industry events in the UK is a great shame, especially when so many others have fallen by the wayside this year.

READ MORE: Royal Bath & West Show CANCELLED - but is set to return next year

"We hope that our visitors, traders and exhibitors will understand that we have a civic responsibility to act sensibly and we felt that with the reduction in numbers of people allowed to meet, cancellation now is the right thing to do.

"This was due to be our 40th anniversary and we had already made some adjustments to the Dairy Show so we will now look forward to welcoming the dairy industry back to next year’s Dairy Show on 6th October 2021.”

The cancellation comes after the flagship Royal Bath & West Show was called off in May.

That event too is set to return, from June 3 to 5, 2021.

The Society said it will be in touch with exhibitors, sponsors and competition entrants for the show with details of what to do next, and will also contact all ticketholders.

"The Board of Trustees and all staff at the Royal Bath & West Society would like to thank the public, trade stand exhibitors, British Cheese Awards exhibitors, and all sponsors for their understanding and patience during this period of uncertainty and what is an unprecedented situation," a spokesperson added.