WE’RE now in the midst of our closed period, where the walls are scrubbed, windows cleaned, and collection items are delicately handled and dusted by our team of dedicated museum assistants.

It really is a special time at the Parsonage, as collection items not always on display are brought out of storage to be checked for signs of deterioration, and items that are always on display – such as tables and chairs – are scrutinised for signs of infestation and wear and tear.

Alongside this activity, our curatorial team are preparing our exhibition spaces for our 2018 exhibition, titled Making Thunder Roar: Emily Brontë.

We are incredibly excited about this year’s bicentenary celebrations.

We know very little about Emily, compared to her siblings, and yet she looms large in people’s imaginations, and 2018 will see us engage with a range of artists to explore the different aspects of her character, including model, actress and social entrepreneur Lily Cole, poet Patience Agbabi, artist Kate Whiteford, and musicians The Unthanks.

We’re also delighted to welcome 2015-2017 Children’s Laureate and The Observer political cartoonist Chris Riddell to the museum in February half-term.

Chris, author of the Goth Girl series, the bestselling Ottoline books, and with Paul Stewart, the Muddle Earth books, the Scavenger series and the Blobheads series, is spending the day with us on February 13.

Teens can take part in a two-hour illustration workshop in the afternoon, and in an evening event at the Old School Room, Chris will talk about his work whilst doing some live illustration. It promises to be a great day and night!

Tickets are selling fast, and places on the workshop are limited, so don’t delay in booking.

Although the museum is closed throughout January, we have storytelling walks taking place in Haworth on Saturday January 13 at 11am and 3pm.

Called ‘A Winter Wander’, the walks begin and end outside the Old School Room, and include encounters with local characters such as John Brown and Tabitha Ratcliffe, who knew the Brontë family well.

On Saturday January 20 at 2.30pm we have a fascinating local history and folklore event at West Lane Baptist Centre. Mapping Magic is an event that involves sharing magical stories and anecdotes about Haworth and the surrounding area.

Devised by Dr Simon White, an academic at Oxford Brookes University, Mapping Magic is an online resource which allows people to share stories of magic and folklore.

You don’t have to be computer literate or t’internet savvy to take part – Simon will explain how the resource works, and how he needs your help so he can expand it.

If you have any magical stories or anecdotes about Haworth and the surrounding area – or can persuade a family member or friend to share theirs – please come along and take part.

Tickets for the Winter Wander cost £6/£4 concessions and include a discount on a hot drink from Cobbles and Clay on Main Street, whilst tickets for an afternoon of Mapping Magic cost £3/£2 concessions and include a cup of tea. That’s two good reasons to brave the cold in January!

Visit bronte.org.uk/whats-on to book tickets online or call 01535 640192. More from me next time on our new Emily exhibition, which opens on February 1.