Dylan Thomas Boathouse

Museum Gallery
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Overview

The Boathouse, where Dylan and Caitlin lived with their children from 1949-1953 is now a heritage centre. The house now contains audio visual presentations, original furnishings and memorabilia, a themed bookshop, tea room, viewing platform and terrace. It was from the Boathouse that Dylan made the fateful journey to New York where he died in 1953 aged 39; an early death that turned a talent into a legend. The house itself has an interesting history. The origin of the name could come from the fact that boats were once moored here, or that small boats were once repaired nearby. The earliest records show that it was leased by the Corporation to a local family in 1834. Later it was converted into 2 fisherman's cottages but in 1899 it was converted back into a single residence. Since that time it was mainly used as a family home or for holiday lets but there are also rumours that the Boathouse was used by smugglers, as there is a secretive entrance down to the water that leads to the path near the front door. Its location below a cliff down on the water's edge means that it could have had some sort of industrial or storage use before 1834. For centuries soldiers marching from Pembroke to London, and pilgrims journeying from St Davids to Canterbury would have crossed at a point just behind the Boathouse to avoid travelling miles inland, and in 1913 the harbour wall was built in front of the Boathouse to bring coal into the town. These two facts suggest that when the port of Laugharne in front of the castle became silted up after a tsunami devastated the Bristol Channel in 1607, the area around the Boathouse became important for the shipping of goods and ferrying of passengers. Dylan's family still have a very strong connection to the Boathouse. Aeronwy, Dylan's only daughter, became an ambassador for his work as well as a fine writer herself. Since her untimely death in 2009 the mantle has passed to her daughter, Hannah Ellis, who is herself a regular visitor to the Boathouse with her family. This is a place the Thomas family still feel very much at home.

Reviews

Went down & was pleasantly surprised. Lots of detail has been presented in a thoughtful way. The writing shed is a little before the boathouse itself & you are able to look in through a large window at the desk as Dylan would've used it. The boathouse is accessed down some steep steps but you walk into the banksy & then can go upstairs to an exhibition & a video presentation from HTV Wales in about 1983 about the poet. Downstairs is a parlour which has an audio of Dylan's work or interview, well worth a visit though, more people should know about this man.

FeB

A lovely path leads to the idyllic cottage via Thomas' writing shed, which has been done out as he would have used it. The boathouse is a lovely little cottage perched on the hillside. A shop and several small rooms exhibit a comprehensive collection of Dylan Thomas' time in Laugharne. The retro video is also worth a watch. The view outside is enough to inspire anyone to write.

MM

We parked in the car park in the village and walked up the lanes to the boathouse. We arrived at an extremely basic shed like building. When we entered I was amazed by how basic it was, there were no comforts there at all, all I could appreciate was the view out over the bay. Maybe that's where his inspiration came from.

TaffyB

The Boat House and his writing shed are well worth a visit, even if you are not a fan. Its a short pleasant walk from the castle and so peaceful with lovely views and you are able to sit in his chair if you fancy getting some inspiration, so different from a lot of places "do not touch" attitude. Loved it!

LynM

I loved it! Such a glorious view! Wonderful afternoon exploring the boat house and the wonderful surrounding area! A must for anyone in the area!

KW

I love this place. The whole town is delightful. The boathouse itself is so peaceful.

TW
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Facilities & information

Food

Tea Room

Extra info

Open Times: Open seven days a week 10.00am-5.00pm.
Price Details: Adult - £4.20. Concession - £3.20. Child 7-16 - £2.00. Under 7s - Free. Tea room only - Free. Family (2 adults and two children) - £10.00. Groups 5+ - 10% discount.

Arrival information & directions

Address: Carmarthenshire County Council, Dylans Walk, Carmarthen, Carmarthenshire, CarmarthenSA3 4SD, United Kingdom

The Boathouse is a 10 minute walk from the centre of Laugharne along Dylan's Walk, passing the Writing Shed which can be viewed from the pathway. There is no vehicular access or parking facilities at the Boathouse.

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