BRONTE fans are being offered a unique listening experience as they walk across the famous moors above Haworth.

They will be able to hear songs specially created by leading folk group The Unthanks from poems written by Emily Bronte.

The Emily Bronte Song Cycle features musical versions of 10 poems by the writer of Gothic masterpiece Wuthering Heights.

It was written and recorded using Emily Bronte’s piano in her home at the Parsonage, by Unthanks composer, pianist and producer Adrian McNally, and performed with sisters Rachel and Becky Unthank.

The group were commissioned to create the ‘audio experience’ by the Bronte Society as part of a year celebrating the 200th anniversary of Emily’s birth.

Visitors to the Bronte Parsonage Museum in Haworth can hear the song cycle from December 17, and can book in advance by visiting

The song cycle will also receive its live premiere at Leeds Town Hall on December 21 at a concert by the Unthanks.

The Emily Bronte Song Cycle, funded with support from Arts Council England, will be available on record from The Unthanks.

As the Bronte Parsonage is now a publicly-accessible museum, the writing and recording had to take place after nightfall.

Adrian McNally wrote the music for the whole record during his first evening at Emily’s piano, a rare example of an early 19th century five-octave cabinet piano.

The days of the residency were spent working on the songs on a German upright at nearby Ponden Hall - another house associated with the Bronte family - before testing his work in progress on Emily’s instrument at the museum each evening.

Several weeks later, McNally returned to the Parsonage with Rachel and Becky Unthank to record the songs, late into the night.

Kitty Wright, executive director of The Bronte Society, said: “This year we have celebrated the 200th anniversary of Emily’s birth with four stunning new commissions covering film (‘Balls’, Lily Cole), poetry (Patience Agbabi), visual art (Kate Whiteford), and now music.

“It is wonderful to bring the year to a close with this work by The Unthanks.

“The time spent by Adrian creating the song cycle has been a pleasure to witness as it came to life in the museum, bringing music back into the rooms where the whole family had enjoyed the same piano so many years ago.

“The link between Emily’s words and the wild surroundings of the moors has an eternal fascination for visitors and we look forward to how the song cycle and listening experience brings a new interpretation to the well-trodden paths around the area the Brontes knew so well.”

The Unthanks selected the Emily Bronte poems that spoke to them most, including ‘Shall Earth No More Inspire Thee’, ‘High Waving Heather’, ‘Lines (The Soft Unclouded Blue of Earth)’ and ‘The Night Is Darkening Round Me’.

The award-winning band are synonymous with bringing history-based projects to life, drawing attention to subjects including the Foundling Museum, the Children’s Employment Act of 1842, and the shipbuilding and coal-mining industries, as well as underlining the work of important artists such as Molly Drake, Robert Wyatt and Graham Miles.

While Tyneside sisters Rachel and Becky Unthank are commonly associated with the traditional music of the North East, bandmate, writer and pianist Adrian McNally is Barnsley born and bred.

He said he was delighted to be working with some iconic Yorkshire heritage again, having previously composed for Brighouse and Rastrick Brass Band to perform with The Unthanks in 2011.

The Emily Bronte Song Cycle, subtitled Shall Earth No More Inspire Thee, is available from the Bronte Parsonage Museum in Haworth from December 17 until March 31.

From now, people can pre-book to reserve headphones for the day they visit the museum.

They will experience the Emily Bronte Song Cycle while treading in the novelist’s footsteps through the churchyard and over the dramatic moorland she and her siblings were inspired by.

Taking in views of Top Withins, the ruined house location which many believe to have been Emily’s inspiration for Wuthering Heights, audiences will simultaneously journey through her poems and the landscape that inspired her, accompanied by this newly-commissioned music written and recorded on her original piano.

The song cycle will be available from The Unthanks under the title Lines - Part Three ‘Emily Bronte’, on ten-inch vinyl, CD and download, exclusively from and the Bronte Parsonage Museum shop from December 7. It will be on general release in other shops from February 22.

The release will be the final part of Lines, a trilogy of records inspired by poetry, and portraying female perspectives from different points in time.

The lines in Part One - ‘Lillian Bilocca’ – were written by actor and writer Maxine Peake and turned into song by McNally.

The songs were originally performed live by The Unthanks in ‘The Last Testament of Lillian Bilocca’, an acclaimed site-specific theatre event written by Peake for Hull City of Culture, about the Hull Triple Trawler Disaster of 1968 in which 58 men lost their lives.

The lines for Part Two – ‘World War One’, are those of First World War poems and letters, and focus on the lesser-heard female voices from the time.

The songs were originally conceived for a live audio-visual project called A Time and A Place, which took place in 2014, the opening year of First World War centenary commemorations, and The Unthanks release them in this, the final year of the centenary.

The three records can be bought as a trilogy in a neat slipcase, or as individual records.

The Unthanks will premiere the Emily Bronte Song Cycle at Leeds Town Hall on December 21, by You Tell Me which features Sarah Hayes and Field Music’s David Brewis. This is currently the only planned live performance.

Visit to book tickets for the performance.