IT’S THE start of a new year and a great time to start planning for the year ahead.

Whether you’re making a list of all the places you’d like to visit, the things you’d like to see and do, or the new hobbies that you’d like to try. Maybe you’re thinking about volunteering somewhere and would like to find out more.

At East Riddlesden Hall, January is the time of year when we start looking for new volunteers.

This year we’ll be opening the house on Thursdays from March 22.

We’re looking for volunteers to come and join us on these days to help us deliver a truly outstanding experience where visitors can get hands on with history and help us take East Riddlesden Hall forward.

East Riddlesden Hall is a local treasure that was saved from demolition in 1933 by the mayor of Keighley, William Brigg, and his twin brother John. They donated the house to the National Trust in 1934, an act of kindness that saved over a thousand years of local history.

East Riddlesden Hall is owned and cared for by the National Trust, a conservation charity set up in 1895 by three people who saw the importance of our nation’s heritage and open spaces and wanted to protect them for others to enjoy.

As well as historic houses like East Riddlesden Hall, the National Trust also looks after coastline, woodland, gardens, mills and moorlands to list just a few, with the aim of restoring, protecting and opening these places up for everyone to explore and enjoy.

Volunteers are the life-blood of the National Trust, and each year volunteers contribute 3.1million hours of their time – the equivalent of 1,590 full time staff.

At East Riddlesden Hall we have approximately 150 volunteers, but we’re always looking for new people who’d like to join the team. There are many reasons to volunteer with us - making new friends, working in amazing places and knowing that you’re helping a great cause are just three fabulous reasons to get involved.

To find out more about volunteering please contact By volunteering at East Riddlesden Hall, you can help us to keep William, John’s and our founders’ vision alive, and be part of something very special.

East Riddlesden Hall is currently closed but will re-open for half-term from February 10 to 15 between 10.30am and 4.30pm.

This February half-term you can give nature a helping hand when you join us to make willow bird feeders or roll up your sleeves and join the outdoor team planting willow shoots. Gingerbread making in the house will give you a taste of the past, and the new seasonal trail will have you discovering lots of new things.

The tea-room’s deluxe hot-chocolate is guaranteed to warm the smallest of hands and is a wonderful way to end an adventurous afternoon.

From February 17 to March 18, East Riddlesden Hall will be open weekends only between 10.30am and 4.30pm. Free entry for National Trust members and under-fives, and general admission prices apply for non-members.