The Beginning - A Joint Conference Between the Dylan Thomas Society and the Thomas Hardy Society

Dylan ThomasCommemorating the 70th Anniversary of Dylan Thomas's Death and the First Performance of 'Under Milk Wood'



  • 10.30 | Dylan’s Swansea – a walking tour with actor Adrian Metcalfe to places of interest including Dylan Thomas Centre, Queen’s Hotel, Dylan Thomas Theatre, Swansea Museum, High Street following part of Dylan’s stories Return Journey and Old Garbo.

  • 14.00 | Happy 109th Birthday Dylan – a tea party in his Birthplace with spam and marmite sandwiches, jelly and blancmange just as his daughter Aeronwy remembered as a 10-year-old.

    16.00 | William Barnes - Influences A mentor of Hardy who published in the local Dorset dialect but was also familiar with the Welsh strict metre

Thomas Hardy Society – at DT Theatre

  • 17.30 | Thomas, DJ and Dylan The influence of Hardy on Dylan and his father

  • 19.00 | Official Conference Opening – Keynote opening speech - buffet and drinks reception – Dylan Thomas Theatre followed by A Sense of Place – Wessex, Wales, Llareggub – the influence of place on the work of Dylan and Hardy. Professor Matt Jarvis of Aberystwyth University and Mark Chutter of the Thomas Hardy Society in conversation with Alun Gibbard


09.00 – 16.00

  • 9.00 | The Young Dylan in Swansea – the neglected part of Dylan’s life even though it was when he wrote two-thirds of his published work. Author and broadcaster Alun Gibbard brings his “ within a world…” alive. Dylan Thomas Theatre.

  • 10.30 to 15.30 | Extraordinary Little Cough –Swansea Mumbles and Gower bus tour takes in Dylan’s splendidly curving shore of Swansea Bay, Mumbles where the Swansea Little Theatre was based and the South Gower coast ending up in Rhossili. Readings on the way from Dylan’s Gower short stories and letters. Lunch at King Arthur Hotel (cost not included in conference fee).

  • 16.30 | Love the Words –time to visit the Dylan Thomas exhibition, Swansea Museum and Maritime Museum Science Festival.

  • 18.00 | Buffet reception Dylan Thomas Theatre to include Hardy meets Dylan The final of a competition to write a play about the imaginary meeting between the two authors presented by Lighthouse Theatre Company – Dylan Thomas Theatre, followed by a buffet reception.

  • 20.00 | From Mad Town to Llareggub - members of the Swansea Little Theatre with their new version of Under Milk Wood


  • 09.30 | A light continental breakfast - Who Killed Dylan Thomas – Dylan created the myth around the circumstances of his death but what is the true story – Rob Gittins – senior scriptwriter on Eastenders has written two books and a TV documentary about the last days of Dylan. Dylan Thomas Theatre

  • 10.30 | Patricia, Edith and Arnold – a tour of Dylan’s Uplands including his childhood haunts, Cwmdonkin Park and a tour of the Dylan Thomas Birthplace with tea and Welsh cakes. Small groups to allow time in Birthplace, walking if weather OK or minibus

  • 13.00 | Lunchtime Farewell

TICKETS: £120 for Dylan Thomas Society and Thomas Hardy Society members. Non-members £140 to include one year's membership of both the DT and TH Societies.

Please book tickets here:


Hotel accommodation is not included in the conference price. Please see below a list of recommended accommodation sites.

  • Morgans Hotel 4 star 01792 484848 closest to DT Theatre. From £150 per night. Own car park

  • Clyne Farm Centre Nine 4-star self-catering cottages 01792 403333 from £80 per night (sleep 2 - 4). 4 miles away. Own car park

  • Marriott Hotel 4 star 01792 642020 From £120 per night Own car park

  • Premier Inn Swansea Waterfront 3 star 0333 3219208 From £80 per night. 3/4 mile away (Premier Inn Swansea Central not advised - in bar area)

  • Travel Lodge Swansea Central 3 star 08719 846326 From £80 per night 1/4 mile away



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