LAWRENCE ALDERSON came into the international arena from a small family farm in the North Yorkshire Dales 


NEW: Biography: published 2019 (see Books page)

Lawrence Alderson CBE MA(Cantab) CBiol FRBI FRAgS MSB                              

I was born in Teesdale into a Yorkshire Dales farming family which had populated Swaledale, Stainmore (Yorkshire / Westmorland) and Teesdale since the Viking occupation of that region of the Pennines. I attended Barnard Castle School and Cambridge University, read for a degree in agricultural science and continued post-graduate studies in education and genetics, being awarded an MA. I was President of Cambridge University Agricultural Society.

I lectured in agricultural colleges with special interest in animal breeding and business management, and became head of department. I acquired experience as a land agent and in estate accountancy, and meanwhile established my own company (Countrywide Livestock Ltd) which developed an international consultancy. I have been an international authority on the conservation of animal genetic resources for many years.

I was awarded the CBE for services to conservation in 2004.

Senior positions                                                                                                       

I have been Chairman of Countrywide Livestock Ltd (CLL) since its formation, President of the White Park Cattle Society since 1988, Trustee and Founder President of Rare Breeds International since 1991, a member of Council of the European Livestock Association since 2001, and Chairman of PigBioDiv Management Board (Europe) since 2008.

Formerly I held office in RBST as Chairman (2003-2007), Executive Director (1990-2000) and Technical Consultant (1973-1990); and I was a member of Defra's UK National Steering Committee on Farm Animal Genetic Resources (FAnGR) (2003-2006). A fuller list of the positions I have held is shown below.


I have long experience in the fields of genetics and animal breeding, animal genetic resources and sustainable agriculture. 
I have judged livestock at most of the major Shows in the UK, including at Harrogate (Great Yorkshire), Builth Wells (Royal Welsh), Balmoral (Royal Ulster) and Stoneleigh.
I am an international authority on the genetic conservation of domestic livestock, and the founder or co-founder of several national 'rare breeds' organisations. 
I am experienced in working with governments, inter-governmental and non-governmental organisations, and have been an invited plenary speaker at numerous international congresses. 
I am the author and/or editor of several books, including the standard work on genetic conservation, and of many scientific and technical papers.

Main positions held:
AGRI Editorial Board (FAO)
Biotechnology for Biodiversity Platform (Europe)
British Angora Goat Society (Vice-Chairman)
British Caspian Horse Trust (Trustee)
British Milksheep Society (Chairman)
British Spotted Pony Society (President)
Combined Flock Book (Chairman)
EEC study on endangered pig breeds (Leader)
EEC study on endangered domestic ruminants
European Livestock Association (Council)
Grazing Animals Project (Council)                                                                  International Caspian Society (Chairman) - current                                                             Kelmscott Rare Breeds Foundation (USA) (Director)                                            National Cattle Association (Council)                                                                           National Sheep Association (Council)

National Consultative Committee (Defra)
National Steering Committee for FAnGR (Defra)
PigBioDiv Management Board (Europe) (Chairman)
RBST (Founder, Technical Consultant, Executive Director, Chairman)
Rare Breeds International (Founding President and Trustee) - current
RBI 7th Global Congress in Vietnam - scientific organising committee
RAgS Fellow 

Semen Archive Management Board of NSP (Defra)
Society of Biology Chartered Biologist                                                                          The Ark (Editor)
Traditional Breeds Meat Marketing Scheme (Chairman)
Traditional Livestock Foundation (Trustee)
Westdown Lamb Ltd (Director)
Westwater Farm Partners (Chairman)
White Park Cattle Society (Chairman)
White Park Cattle Society (President) - current