22nd Annual Colloquium Programme


22nd COLLOQUIUM                                   APRIL 21st-23rd, 2017                      BRECON CASTLE HOTEL

The Twenty-second Vaughan Association Colloquium will be held at The Castle of Brecon Hotel from teatime on Friday, April 21st to lunchtime on Sunday, April 23rd, 2017.  The first ‘modern’ hotel of its kind in Brecon and among the earliest in Wales, ‘The Castle’, standing on a prominent hill in the Georgian centre of the town, is a late Regency rebuilding (begun in 1809) of an existing house within the  ivy-clad Norman fortress site, and abuts directly on its Great Hall . Nearby stands the ancient Priory (now Cathedral) and the Priory Grove dear to Henry Vaughan; and before it a view over Brecon and the river Usk towards the Brecon Beacons.  In a land of ruined castles, monasteries and mountains, the scene is still an epitome of the Romantic ‘Sublime and Picturesque’.

Brecon has for us the added attraction of the Vaughan connection.  Henry (and very likely Thomas) enjoyed its congenial inns; here in the Priory Grove, whose owner Sir Herbert Price was her relative by marriage, he courted his first wife, Catherine; and here in the Civil War the twins joined Colonel Price’s Royalist regiment.  Henry may even have met Charles I in the Priory when the King came rallying support in 1645; and he certainly looked on indignant as the townsmen demolished Brecon’s defences to forestall a damaging siege, effectively capitulating to Parliament.  Beyond the town, not far down the Usk Valley, lie the Vaughans’ birthplace and Henry’s main home at Newton Farm near Scethrog from which most of his publications are dated; a mile on in Llansantffraed churchyard is Henry’s grave with its famous tombstone; across the river at Talybont-on-Usk is the new Vaughan Walk; and downstream stands recently refurbished Tretower Court, home of the twins’ paternal grandparents, and one of the finest medieval manor houses in Wales.

The privately owned Hotel has 43 well-equipped en-suite bedrooms, a bar, restaurant, private dining facilities for conferences, free wi-fi in downstairs areas, and ample free off-street parking.

Speakers for 2017 include:

Dr Rowan Williams on the works of Henry and Thomas Vaughan.

Jeremy Hooker on David Jones as a Metaphysical Poet.

Colleen Wethered on the Poetry of Rowan Williams, David Jones, George Herbert and  RS Thomas.

Elizabeth Clarke, ‘Henry Vaughan and the Song of Songs’

Michael Durrant, ‘“[H]undreds of greasy lies cooked together”: Printers, Conspiracy and the King’s Book.’

Poets Gillian Clark and Fiona Owen.


FRIDAY. Arrival around  tea-time, if possible.  Dinner at 7.00pm followed by first talk. SATURDAY two talks before lunch. Afternoon free. Dinner at 7.00pm.followed by poetry readings. SUNDAY there are two talks, after breakfast; followed (after coffee) by the Association AGM to which all are invited. SUNDAY 3pm Evensong and Memorial Service for Henry Vaughan at Llansantffraed Church.

Meal Times:

Breakfast from 7.30 am                       Lunch 1.00pm             Tea  4.00pm                Dinner 7.00pm



(PLEASE NOTE: we have shortly to put down a Deposit of £25 pp (for Resident Participants) to confirm our Booking and Numbers, and would be grateful for cheques a.s.a.p.  Final Full Payment will be required in advance, by April 1, 2017.  Places may have to be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis]. 

I wish to book _______ place/s as follows (all prices include breakfast and dinner, coffee/tea and biscuits, excluding lunches. VAT included):

2 Nights Double/Twin Room , £195 per person [    ]  1 Night D,B&B.£ 97.50 pp   [     ]

2 Nights Single Room, £235 per person              [    ]  1 Night D,B&B.£ 117.50 pp [     ]

Light Lunches, £8   [   ]  Sunday Carvery Lunch  £15 [    ]

Day Attendance, £46  (incl. coffee and biscuits, buffet lunch and tea).  [    ] Dinner £25 extra [    ]

(Non-resident attendance at the Saturday after-dinner Poetry/Music Session, no charge).


TOTAL  included:  £______________

DIETARY REQUIREMENTS_____________________________________________________

COULD YOU POSSIBLY CAR SHARE? ie. Offer a lift or do you need a lift? If so Simone will liaise_____________________________________________________________________________


 Resident/Day Participant/s at the Twenty-second Vaughan Association Colloquium at Brecon Castle Hotel, April 21-23, 2017.   

 I enclose my cheque (payable to ‘The Vaughan Association’) for   £ _____ Deposit / Full Payment. Please return to Dr Simone Thomas.

For BACS Payment please return form to or email Dr Simone Thomas and pay Vaughan Association  Sort Code 51 61 28 Account Number 73729973

NAME & ADDRESS:________________________________________________________________________


TELEPHONE:_______________________________E-MAIL: _______________________________________                                                                                                                                                              

CONTACT: Secretary Dr Simone Thomas, Byron House, Henton, Wells. BA5 1PD  UK tel .01749 678044. Mobile 07934 470668. email thomassya@gmail.com

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