The sheep farmer is now widely recognised as ‘one of the key faces’ of the event.
Edward Darke has been appointed Devon County Agricultural Association (DCAA) president after more than 50 years stewarding and showing at Devon County Show.
Mr Darke, 75, who farms 450-hectares (1112-acres) near Kingsbridge, South Hams, first stewarded at the Devon County Show in 1966 and is now widely recognised as ‘one of the key faces’ of the event.
As a keen shower of his pedigree Devon and Cornwall Longwool sheep, one of his most memorable moments was when the Her Majesty the Queen presented him the trophy for the supreme champion sheep at the 1981 Royal Show.
The family’s Longwools also won the south west Champion of Champions award in 2003 for the sheep’s wool.
He said being elected as president was ‘a dream come true’.
“When I started with the Devon County Show all those years ago, I could never have imagined that one day I should be elected president,” Mr Darke said.
“The show has been a big part of my life and I am proud to have been able to help make it the great event that it is.
“This is a tremendous honour, a dream come true, and I am absolutely thrilled to have been given the chance.”
DCAA chief executive Richard Maunder added: “Edward Darke has become one of the key faces of the Devon County Show.
“He is one of the main reasons why we can attract such a superb entry of livestock, year in, year out.”
On the home farm, Mr Darke farms with his son Richard and two grandsons.
Between them they milk 250 cows, have a commercial flock of 400 breeding ewes, 60-strong flock of pedigree Devon and Cornwall Longwools and grow about 200-hectares (494-acres) of cereals.
When he is not farming, he spends his time as chief steward of the East Devon and Ottery St Mary and has been chairman of the Dart Vale and Holden Harriers point-to-points for the past 50 years.