Dai Llewellyn

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Sir David St Vincent "Dai" Llewellyn, 4th Baronet (2 April 1946 – 13 January 2009), was a Welsh socialite and playboy.

Some people may call being a playboy a useless occupation, but I'm not so sure. I've not only had fun myself, but there has been fun for many others.[1]

Background[edit]

Llewellyn was born in Aberdare, the son of Sir Harry Llewellyn, 3rd Baronet, a 1952 Summer Olympics gold medallist showjumper, and the Hon Christine Saumarez, the daughter of the 5th Baron de Saumarez, from a family from Guernsey with British naval ties. Llewellyn's middle name, St Vincent, came from his great-grandfather James St Vincent Saumarez, 4th Baron de Saumarez,[2] and originally commemorated the friendship between James Saumarez, 1st Baron de Saumarez, and John Jervis, 1st Earl of St Vincent.[3]

Personal history[edit]

Llewellyn grew up at the family homes of Gobion Manor and Llanfair Grange, both near Abergavenny, and was educated at Hawtreys Preparatory School and Eton College. He did not complete his time at Eton, being moved to Milton Abbey School. He then attended Aix-en-Provence University in southern France, and worked as a travel agent, journalist, male model and as the social secretary of the Clermont Club and the Dorchester club.[4]

Llewellyn was a Knight of the Order of Saint Lazarus (statuted 1910), a humanitarian charity, and in 1992 drove relief convoys in Yugoslavia.

A supporter of the United Kingdom Independence Party, he stood in the 2007 National Assembly for Wales election, as a candidate for the party in Cardiff North,[5] where he came last and polled 3.7% of the vote[6] However his drinking bouts, espousal of UKIP and anti-socialist behaviour earned disapproval in his native Wales for opposing the compulsory teaching of Welsh. Driven out for his "British" agenda he left his beloved homeland permanently for Mayfair, London.

Private life[edit]

Llewellyn married Vanessa Mary Theresa Hubbard in 1980. She was the daughter of Lady Miriam Fitzalan-Howard and Lt-Cdr Peregrine Hubbard and a niece of the 17th Duke of Norfolk. They had two daughters, actress Olivia Llewellyn (b. 1982) and Arabella (b. 1983). Llewellyn was known as a 'party animal', regularly bragging about his prowess with women.[7] Often dressed like a latter-day Master of Fox Hounds, he frequented London's clubs quaffing magnums of champagne earning him the soubriquet "Conquistador of the Canape Circuit". He once told an old friend journalist Peter McKay over lunch that he had left his "secretary tied up in the bath."[8] The couple divorced after seven years in 1987, and Vanessa then married John Anstruther-Gough-Calthorpe; one of her children from this marriage is the actress Gabriella Wilde. In 1999, Llewellyn inherited the Llewellyn baronetcy upon the death of his father, along with a home in Aberbeeg, near Abertillery.[citation needed]

His younger brother, Roddy Llewellyn, is a British landscape gardener and gardening journalist, who was at one time romantically involved with Princess Margaret. Llewellyn's relationship with his brother was soured when he published a lurid account of Roddy's relationship with Princess Margaret. Although Llewellyn later apologised, his brother found it difficult to forgive him, and later made disparaging comments regarding Llewellyn's then fiancée, Christel Jurgenson. The brothers fell out, with many of their comments aired in the tabloid press. In 2008, on the news of Llewellyn's failing health, the brothers finally reconciled.[9]

Although Llewellyn died of bone cancer, he had already been diagnosed with prostate cancer, cirrhosis of the liver and severe anaemia.[10] His last affair was with a widow and old friend, Ingrid Seward who was with him when he died, aged 62, on 13 January 2009, at Edenbridge and District War Memorial Hospital in Kent.[11] His funeral was held at St Mary's Church, Coddenham, near Ipswich.[citation needed]

References[edit]

  1. ^ WalesOnline (23 November 2008). "In pain and dying, but Sir Dai Llewellyn says he has no regrets". WalesOnline. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  2. ^ Burke's Peerage, vol. 2 (2003), p. 2370.
  3. ^ "Sir Dai Llewellyn, Bt: playboy and bon vivant". The Times. London. 15 January 2009. Retrieved 17 January 2009.
  4. ^ WalesOnline (15 January 2009). "Sir Dai Llewellyn – an obituary". WalesOnline. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  5. ^ Sir Dai says: Wales, vote for me – icWales
  6. ^ WalesOnline (15 January 2009). "Sir Dai Llewellyn – an obituary". WalesOnline. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  7. ^ "Dai Llewellyn: The ultimate playboy". The Independent. 15 January 2009. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  8. ^ "Sir Dai Llewellyn". The Telegraph. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  9. ^ "Sir Dai Llewellyn". The Daily Telegraph. London. 14 January 2009.
  10. ^ WalesOnline (23 November 2008). "In pain and dying, but Sir Dai Llewellyn says he has no regrets". WalesOnline. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  11. ^ Burgess, Kaya (14 January 2009). "Sir Dai Llewellyn dies aged 62". The Times. London. Retrieved 14 January 2009.
Baronetage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Harry Llewellyn
Baronet
(of Bwlffa)
1999–2009
Succeeded by
Roddy Llewellyn