1825 Conferences & Events has its home in the Old Guildhall, Swansea, now known as the Dylan Thomas Centre.
The Dylan Thomas Centre is one of Swansea’s most iconic buildings and since it was built in the 19th century it has led a varied and interesting existence.
The old Swansea Town Hall, now fondly known as The Dylan Thomas Centre was built in 1825 in the Doric style by local builder Thomas Bowen. Work began with the laying of the foundation stone of the New Town Hall and ‘House of Correction’ by Richard Jeffreys, the Portreeve, amid great pomp and ceremony. At noon, the corporation, escorted by detachments of the Swansea Cavalry, came to the site to the sound of cannon fire and the intoned blessings of the Vicar of Swansea to witness the laying of a stone which bore the following inscription:
This Foundation or Corner Stone of a Guildhall was laid by the Portreeve. Alderman, and Burgesses of this Borough, the 28th day of September 1825. Richard Jeffreys Esq., Portreeve; Lewis Thomas Esq., Recorder; Thomas Bowen, Architect and Builder.
Work on the building proceeded slowly and it was not completed until October 1829 although there is no record of an official opening ceremony. The final cost of the building was £6,369 16s. 2½d., far in excess of the original estimate agreed.
It remained as a functional town hall until the present civic centre, Swansea Guildhall, replaced it in 1924. Built from sandstone, the façade features eight Corinthian columns modelled on the Temple of Jupitor Stator in Rome and sweeping arched windows and architraves, richly decorated by gargoyles, lion masks and heads to the keyblocks.