I CAN’T quite believe that this is my last piece of the year, and as such our amazing year of celebrating Charlotte Bronte is drawing to a close.

We are all very proud to be ending 2016 on a high, as the Parsonage recently won a ‘highly commended’ award at the prestigious Welcome to Yorkshire White Rose Awards. A fitting end to a momentous year!

We’re getting in the Christmas spirit now, with a festive touch here and there. Unfortunately our Christmas events have sold out, but there’s a final opportunity to do some late night Christmas shopping on Thursday December 15.

We’ll be open until 8pm, and after 5pm entry is free to visitors who live in BD22, BD21, BD20 or Thornton. Join us for a glass of sherry!

Further exciting festive news, for those of you who like to dabble in Twitter, is that our creative partner Tracy Chevalier will be sharing Brontë ‘tibits’ through December via her #BronteAdvent Calendar.

Tracy will be tweeting daily at 2pm about Charlotte, the family and this year’s celebrations. I’ve heard that a rumour that the Victoria Wood spoof of the parsonage will feature – sounds like good fun!

And even more good news is that we finally know the broadcast date of Sally Wainwright’s Brontë drama To Walk Invisible – it’s December 29, so make a note and do not miss!

I explained last month that whilst the museum is closed for essential collection cleaning in January, in a change to the usual state of affairs, the shop will remain open, and we have an event planned for each Saturday of the month.

Tickets are selling fast, so if you fancy learning more about Branwell on a storytelling walk around Haworth; are interested in finding out more about Anne from her most recent biographer; want to hear from the production designer of To Walk Invisible; or would like an exclusive peep behind the scenes of the museum during our closed period, then visit bronte.org.uk or call 01535 640192 for tickets.

Looking ahead to 2017, Branwell’s bicentenary year, there will be an emphasis on exploring the man who played a pivotal role in the early creative lives of his sisters, and we’ll hopefully explode some of the myths about Branwell. Watch this space for news of our 2017 creative partner, who is to be announced any day now!

Given that we’ve ended the year with an award, it seems fitting to end with favourite moments of the year from the front-of-house team whose efforts helped us to win the award.

Museum assistant Victoria really enjoyed the emphasis on women writers this year – a legacy Charlotte would have been proud of. Esther and Nick were pleased to see us collaborating with the likes of West Yorkshire Playhouse, and hope to see more of this in the future.

But for Carole, it was all about the cake; specifically the cake on Charlotte’s birthday and the general camaraderie of museum staff bustling about in the kitchen of the Old School Room serving tea and cake to the hungry hoards. What a year it’s been! And so Merry Christmas from all at the Parsonage, here’s to 2017!