- Blue Tit
- Chiff Chaff
- Song Thrush
- Wood Pigeon
- Great Tit
- Nut Hatch
- Black Cap
- Pied Wagtail
- Greater Spotted woodpecker
- Coal Tit
- Mistle Thrush
- Herring Gull
- March Tit
- Red Kite
- Field Fare
- Long Tailed Tit
- Tree Creeper
- Bull Finch
- Willow Warbler
- House Sparrow
- Canada Geese
- Feral Pigeon
- Grey Heron
- Black Headed Gull
- Lesser Black Backed Gull
- Sparrow Hawk
- Greylag Goose
Boat House Laugharne
When staying with us here at Old Oak Barn it is very likely you will pop down to Laugharne and visit the Boat House where Dylan Thomas once lived with his young family. The writing shed is on the footpath going to the Boathouse and you will enjoy peering through the window to see where Dylan Thomas penned some of his works for example “Over Sir John’s Hill”
The tea room is open all year round and when the sun shines it is a treat to sit on the terrace overlooking the estuary and enjoy some freshly prepared soup or even a cream tea. Almost everything is prepared and cooked on site in the tiny kitchen. You will probably see or hear lapwings, egrets, ducks, redshanks, herons, oystercatchers and even barn owls. The terrace has breathtaking views of the Taf estuary and the Gower beyond. On a clear day you can see for miles.
As well as the tearoom, there is a furnished front parlour, an upstairs exhibition area showing a 24 minute film, a shop and toilet facilities. The Boat House Laugharne is closely associated with Dylan Thomas and it is where he enjoyed some relative stability with his family and he was of course very creative in his writing. There are people sill in the village today who remember him even though he died many years ago in 1953.
The Boat House is open every day of the year except Christmas – please check for exact opening hours which although daily are reduced in the winter months. Note – the walkway from the free car park is very accessible including for those with pushchairs BUT it ends in a steep flight of steps or a scramble over rocks so do take care if visiting especially wehen it is wet.
Laugharne Weekend 2018
Next year’s festival will take place on April 6-8.
At the moment we have space that week starting on Friday April 6th for £495 for 7 nights or on a pro rata basis for a long weekend Friday through to the Monday for 3 nights at Old Oak Barn The barn sleeps four and is very comfortable – in beautiful surroundings approx 10 minutes from Laugharne.
There look to be lots of wonderful musicians, poets, sporting legends and popular artists appearing!
The easiest way to keep up to date is to go to the Laugharne Facebook Page by clicking right here!
The usual venues within the town will be:-
The Millennium/Memorial Hall
The Congregational Church
The Browns Marquee
The Fountain Inn
Tin Shed Laugharne
They call this an “experience” – Tin Shed Experience and that is exactly what it is! A fantastic trip down memory lane in a fairly recently established little quirky museum in the centre of Laugharne. It has been set up and is still run by two locals who obviously have a passion for war time memorabilia! No techy displays here but instead either Seimon or Andrew or one of their trusty volunteers are on hand to tell you in person all about each exhibit – it is a not for profit organisation.
Tin Shed Experience is open Wed – Sunday usually from 10.am or sometimes by arrangement. Best to check their website for exact times. There is a small entrance fee for the museum and a donation bucket too! Donations are greatly appreciated and will help ensure the operation of the museum through the coming years. About 75% of the museum has been rebuilt using recycled materials and they are always on the lookout for unwanted tin or timber or indeed more memorabilia!
This picture shows the exhibit of the famous locally born pilot who fought in WW1 and WW2 “Ira Jones” – a local hero!
There are lots of interesting bits and pieces – some fascinating items which have somehow just landed in the museum by chance. The dressed models have been lovingly put together with great attention to detail. Lots of local schools now visit the museum so that children can see for themselves a little bit of Welsh History. Why not visit yourselves soon to find out more.
This year in 2015 Tin Shed Experience in Laugharne has been voted the third best museum in Wales just behind St Fagans and Big Pit! Congratulations!
Laugharne – Watch this video to see beautiful Carmarthenshire landscape – only 5 miles from Old Oak Barn.
The short walk of 4.5 miles will take you around all the historical and unique points in and around Laugharne which has been developed recently to celebrate the birthday of Dylan Thomas. It is surely one of our favourite places nearby and if you watch the film you will get a real sense of what to expect. It takes in part of the Wales Coast Path too as well of course as the churchyard of St Martin’s church where Dylan Thomas is buried. The walk was created by Bob Stevens who obviously has a love of the area.
If you walk the route on your birthday you can pop into local shops and pubs for some freebies including a tasty bag of chips. It ends at the iconic Browns Hotel which is a great place to drop by for a pint!
Dylan Thomas 100
Had he still been alive Dylan Thomas would have been 100 this year!
Laugharne is celebrating his birth and getting involved in the worldwide festival.
Old Oak Barn is offering short breaks throughout the year for visitors and fans who want to stay near Laugharne in 2014!
What is Dylan Thomas 100?
Many original and high profile events are planned across the world but especially in Laugharne, Swansea, New Quay, London, Oxford and New York this centenary year. They will all mark the anniversary of the birth of Dylan Thomas – Dylan Thomas 100.
Funding has been generously given to support these events from many sources too numerous to mention. One purpose of Dylan Thomas 100 is to raise awareness of his great writings among young people especially. The unique way in which Dylan Thomas observed the lives of those around him and recorded his interpretations of the world he lived in and the places he stayed in are passionately reflected in his writings – this is what makes him special.
Dylan Thomas spent about 4 years of his later life in Laugharne and it was during this time he was very productive with his writing. There are still today several people still living in the little West Wales village who remember him well.
Patron of Dylan Thomas 100
HRH The Prince of Wales is an enthusiastic and interested patron of Dylan Thomas 100. He visited Laugharne last year and toured the village including a pit stop at The Browns! You can listen to his reading of Fern Hill here!
Ambassadors of the Festival
Hosts of famous people are playing a part in being Ambassadors for the event and include writers, musicians, artists, actors and politicians. Cerys Matthews, Karl Jenkins, Michael Sheen, Carol Ann Duffy, Roger McGough, ROb Brydon, Sir Peter Blake and Rhodri Thomas to name but a few.
Please download the brochure here for latest information! Dylan Thomas Website.
Dylan Marlais Thomas was born in 1914 and is our most famous Welsh poet and writer whose works include the poems “Do not go gentle into that good night” and “And death shall have no dominion“, the “play for voices”, Under Milk Wood, and stories and radio broadcasts such as A Child’s Christmas in Wales and Portrait of the Artist as a Young Dog. He is being remembered this centenary year with a number of events in nearby Laugharne which is about 10 minutes from Old Oak Barn which is offering self catering accommodation to visitors keen to celebrate too. Dylan Thomas was popular in his lifetime and remained so after his premature death in New York. In his later life he acquired a reputation, which he is said to have encouraged, as a “roistering, drunken and doomed poet”
Thomas was born in Swansea, and left school at 16, initially becoming a journalist for a short time. Although many of his works appeared in print while he was still a teenager, it was the publication of “Light breaks where no sun shines”, in 1934, that drew praise and caught the attention of the literary world. While living in London, Thomas met Caitlin Macnamara, whom he married in 1937. Their stormy relationship was marred by alcoholism and was mutually destructive. In the early part of his marriage, Thomas and his family lived hand-to-mouth, settling in the Welsh fishing village of Laugharne where he wrote avidly and visitors can still see the little writing shed which overlooks the estuary on the way to the boathouse. This shed is going on tour later in the year and is somewhere nearly all our visitors go because it is such a beautiful wander along the Taf estuary.
Why it’s special
Dylan Thomas described Laugharne as “The strangest town in Wales” on his first visit. But he kept coming back and the town is of huge significance to his work. The town of Llareggub (“bugger all” spelt backwards) in his radio play Under Milk Wood was based on Laugharne, and it was in his shed-cum-study above the Boathouse (“My seashaken house / On a breakneck of rocks”) that he wrote it and many of his other works.
Across the road from Browns hotel where Dylan drank most days is the Pelican, the tall Georgian terraced house where Thomas would visit his father to do the crossword and chat. It was the sight of his father becoming sick that moved Thomas to write his poem Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night. It was also in the Pelican that Thomas’s body was laid out when he died in 1953.
Recommended tourist attractions in Carmarthenshire
Birdlife at Old Oak Barn near Carmarthen
We had a detailed bird survey undertaken a few years ago with 45 different species counted over a 2 day period 31 march and 1 April. And this was before the majority of summer migrants had returned. That particular night 3 chiff chaffs arrived and were clearly heard singing and sounded very happy to be back in Wales.
Many visitors are overwhelmed by the sound made by the birds in March and April which echoes across the valley. We are so fortunate to have so many birds living nearby. The list above does not include many of the summer visitors for example swallows and house martins who make an appearance around the second or third week in April. Inside the barn we have a selection of bird books for you to borrow. For keen photographers we can hang extra bird feeders up in the copse beyond the barn so you can try your luck at photographing too!
See the bluebells at Old Oak Barn near St Clears!
Cwmpalis woods are about 40 acres in total and this year the bluebells are going to be stunning. These pictures were taken on May 13th and we think they will be at their most lovely next week when we happen to have visitors from Ireland returning for a second holiday! If visitors want and we have time we offer a spin around the farm in Jerry’s truck!
The photos show the little log cabin in the middle of the woods and a patch of clearfell where very very bright blue flowers flowered for several weeks.
This year’s Laugharne Weekend Festival will take place on the first weekend in April. Line-up includes Sir Peter Blake, Mark Thomas, Caitlin Moran,Tracey Thorn, John Hegley, Mark Watson, John Cooper Clarke, Stuart Maconie, Phill Jupitus, Jeremy Vine, Jackie Kay, Niall Griffiths, Grace Dent, Mark Billingham, Belinda Bauer, John Harvey, Martin Rowson, John Osborne (John Peel’s Shed), Robin Ince, Datblygu, Jemima Dury,The Gentle Good, Pete Brown, Rachel Trezise, Richard James, Threatmantics and a good deal more yet to be announced.
The Laugharne Weekend for more details!
Here at Old Oak Barn near St Clears we can offer lovely self catering accommodation for anyone wanting to go to the festival. Please get in touch for our info sheet with details of everything you would need to know about our self catering converted barn! Taxis can be organised for a return trip if needed at reasonable rates but as we ourselves have weekend tickets this year the chance of a lift is good too!