New intern Hermione Williams pens the latest article about the Bronte Parsonage Museum


This year the Brontë Parsonage has had its busiest closed season yet with much refurbishment taking place.

Building works have been carried out to relocate the admissions area.

There is now a timeline of the family’s life and contemporary events to give visitors more context before they enter the house.

We hope these changes will improve the overall visitor experience. And we also have a new contemporary arts space, currently displaying works by Cornelia Parker.

Last week, the Brontë Society launched its year-long 120th anniversary programme at Christie’s, celebrating our status as the oldest literary society in the English-speaking world.

The reception was lively, with more than 100 guests attending. Speeches were given by Charlotte Brontë biographer and former president, Rebecca Fraser, and Professor Ann Sumner, Brontë Society executive director.

Ann reminded guests the first meeting of council was held in January 1894 and the second in February 1894. Initially, membership costs were half a crown!

The evening saw the launch of a new patrons scheme to help raise support for future exciting plans, as well as the launch of Brontë liqueur. All at the reception enjoyed tasting it!

Jenny McKinley from Scala Publishing was also there, celebrating the launch of our new guide book. Guests enjoyed Yorkshire-inspired canapés and Timothy Taylor beer, as well as wine, which Scala Publishing donated.

This season we welcome our new exhibition, The Brontës and Animals. Animals feature heavily in the Brontë novels, from Pilot in Jane Eyre to Snap in Agnes Grey, as well as in their personal lives. The exhibition explores this relationship. Now the Parsonage has re-opened, it has many fun family events planned for half term, each animal themed to celebrate our new exhibition. Today there is Animal Writes with local writer Beth Cunningham, and all week there are furry facts to be found around the museum. All events are free with museum admission. Please see our website for more details or contact Sue Newby via her e-mail address.

The fourth Brontë Festival of Women’s Writing takes place from March 14-16. An exciting programme will be taking place during the weekend, including talks, workshops, readings and family events.

The event opens with our writer-in-residence, Jackie Kay, and other authors include Louise Crosby, Sarah Dunant and Rebecca Stirrup. These events are sure to be popular, so please visit our website to book a space!

The team are very much looking forward to welcoming you at the Parsonage.