Llanelli Community Heritage Annual General Meeting 2014

Annual General Meeting 2014 Dr. David Davies (L) and John Wynne Hopkins

Dr. David Davies's talk on 11th March following our AGM had an intriguing title - "Forget about Llanelly House - just make sure Napoleon doesn't get the dead dog" - and the tale didn't disappoint. The Emperor Napoleon didn't have a great deal to do with it beyond providing the turbulent backdrop to a hazardous journey across Europe performed by two of the deceased Sir John Stepney's servants. They were charged with the conveyance of his pet dog from Budapest to London in return for a share in the will. They succeeded in delivering the dog, but in body, not in spirit - the poor animal had died somewhere in Europe. Fortunately for the two beneficiaries, the will had not stipulated that he dog be alive, so they did get the money!The story of the inheritance and the transfer of property and fortune from the Stepneys to the Chambers, was complicated and fascinating, involving a tontine-type will, illegitimacy and early death - a real family drama.