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Last Updated: Wednesday, 11 July 2007, 20:00 GMT 21:00 UK
Dylan Thomas home sold at auction
Sea View
The four-storey Grade II listed house is in need of repair
One of Dylan Thomas's former seaside homes, which attracted leading writers and artists, has been sold at auction for 232,000.

The poet spent some of the happiest years of his life living at Sea View in Laugharne with his wife Caitlin.

Described as a "doll's house" by artist Augustus John, the final bid for the Grade II listed property exceeded the 200,000 guide price.

The new owner said he intended to renovate the house to its former glory.

Graham Milsom, an architect with a practice in Crickhowell, Powys, said his son, Jan, had bid for the house on his behalf.

It's a very extraordinary house, with a lovely feel to it
Steve Treacy

Mr Milsom said his family already had a home in Laugharne, and they intended to keep Sea View as one dwelling.

There was a possibility it may be let to holiday makers in the future, but that was not certain, he added.

The house had been in the ownership of the Treacy family for 30 years before the auction on Wednesday.

Speaking before the sale, Steve Treacy told how in 1977 his father Ted had seen a notice advertising the house for sale in the window of a shop in Tumble, where he had gone to buy car insurance.

"My father always wanted to live by the sea, he wasn't aware of the Dylan Thomas connection," he explained.

TS Eliot and Augustus John
Visitors included TS Eliot and Augustus John

Mr Treacy went to speak to the owner, who was enjoying a lunchtime drinking session with his friends in the pub.

The group told him he could only buy the house if he could last the afternoon's drinking session.

"He passed the test - he saw them all off, and as a result, the owner said he could buy the house," said Mr Treacy.

He said he had "mixed feelings" about saying goodbye to his "wonderful family home".

"It's a very extraordinary house, with a lovely feel to it," he said.

Sea View stands four storeys high and just one room deep.

It is one of three properties in Laugharne which were at some point occupied by Dylan Thomas.

Before moving into the 19th Century property he lived with Caitlin for a short time in a fisherman's cottage called Eros.

More notably, years after leaving Sea View he returned to Laugharne to take up residence in The Boathouse.

'Full repair'

The couple were expecting their first child when they moved into Sea View in June 1938.

They entertained a host of personalities at the house, including the writer T S Elliot, and the painter Augustus John, who memorably described it as "a doll's house".

And despite the spectre of debt being partly to blame for their departure in May 1940, Caitlin later wrote that they had spent some of their happiest years at Sea View.

Matthew Thomas from Terry Thomas estate agents, said its unique features, history, and views over the estuary had attracted potential buyers from all over the UK.


VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Hear Dylan Thomas describe who lives in Laugharne



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01 Mar 05 |  South West Wales
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10 Dec 04 |  South West Wales
Swansea: Lovely or ugly town?
26 Nov 04 |  South West Wales
Festival marks Dylan's death
08 Apr 03 |  Wales

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