TWO major Welsh agricultural shows have been cancelled because of the coronavirus outbreak – and the fate of the Royal Welsh Show in July is also under discussion.

The Royal Welsh Agricultural Society has announced the cancellation of its Grassland event in Ruthin on May 7 and the Smallholding and Countryside Festival on May 16 and 17 at the showground in Llanelwedd.

In a statement the society said: "It is with deep regret that due to the deteriorating situation surrounding Coronavirus (Covid-19), the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society, after taking careful account of the latest Government and public health guidance, have today announced the cancellation of events scheduled during May and June.

"With the Government advising against attending mass gatherings and further action relating to social distancing and self-isolation, the society felt there was no other option."

It added: "The society appreciates the disruption and disappointment that will be caused, but the absolute priority must lie with the well-being of our supporters and the protection of public health in this time of unprecedented uncertainty.

"We are continuing to closely monitor the situation as it develops ahead of the Royal Welsh Show which is planned for July 20-23."

Chief executive Steve Hughson said: "The society is deeply disappointed that we have had to make the difficult decision to cancel these important society events.

"However, as a responsible event organiser, we fully understand the need to work across the industry to minimise the spread of this pandemic.

"The society appreciates that this will cause inconvenience for all concerned and encourage those with urgent questions or queries to contact us via,

"The society would like to thank our members, traders, exhibitors, competitors, sponsors and all stakeholders for their understanding and patience during this period of uncertainty.

"We will keep you fully informed regarding any further developments in what is an unprecedented situation."