The venue for the Creative Writing Courses is Innisfree House, situated on The Green on Llansteffan's seafront about 7 miles south of Carmarthen. This peninsula was a much beloved landscape inhabited by the young Dylan Thomas, often staying with his maternal Aunts. Fern Hill, his Auntie Annie's farm that inspired the famous poem, is just a couple of miles up the road near Llangain. In 1939 he was best man at Llansteffan Church for his friend, Keidrych Rhys (poet and literary editor), and did of course drink at the Edwinsford Arms pub on many occasions (it is now a weekend restaurant - Hen Yr Dafarn).
The house is a 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom holiday home with a large kitchen dining room, a living room with balcony overlooking the beach and also a study. It occupies the first and second floors so there are two good staircases with handrails but unfortunately this makes the building unsuitable for disabled guests. It is also a pet-free property due to our son's allergies, so we are unable to accept guide dogs.
The master bedroom contains a king-size and a 3' single bed under the eaves. It has an ensuite wet room. The middle bedroom contains two 3' single beds (one under the eaves), the end bedroom contains two 3' single beds (they can convert to a Superking). These two bedrooms share the bathroom which contains both a bath and walk-in shower cubicle. There is a separate WC on this floor. Both the master and middle bedrooms can be single occupancy for a supplement. Innisfree House is a Visit Wales 5-star graded property.
There is a printer for use with a memory stick. Wifi (although not encouraged while writing!) is freely available for guests to use. The house is gas centrally heated with underfloor heating in the kitchen diner and ensuite wet room. There's a utility room with washing machine should you need it, and a tumble dryer in the grounds. The downstairs hallway has ample space to store walking boots and waterproofs. Binoculars are available for anyone interested in studying the many sea-going birds visible daily across the mud flats (Cormorants, Black-tailed Godwits, Oyster Catchers, Little Egrets, to name a few).
There are plenty of wonderful spaces to sit and write: a study with two desks overlooking the beautiful back gardens; a desk in the bay window of the living room looking out to sea and another desk in the larger of the three bedrooms directly above. The dining table is the space used for morning workshops but in the afternoons several people could sit and write there, contemplating the sea or the magnificent views of Llansteffan Castle on the hill (free to enter at any time).
Outdoors there is a 32' balcony spanning the front of the house with table and chairs, and beyond are many benches along the sea-front, with some beautiful, easy walks along the coastal path towards Scotts Bay offering far-reaching views across the Towy Estuary.
The two local pubs (The Castle or The Inn at the Sticks, written up recently in The Guardian's top 50 Sunday Lunches) are approx 8 mins walk.
There is ample free parking in the beach car park opposite. Carmarthen station links into train services from Birmingham and Paddington. The house is half an hour's drive from the end of the M4.