Friday, 18 January 2013

Parsonage redecorated

Parsonage Press Release from Jenna Holmes:
January 2013 will see the first major redecoration scheme in 25 years for Haworth Parsonage, once home to the world’s most famous literary family, the Brontës, and now one of the UK’s top tourist attractions.

Using historical and scientific analysis produced by academics at the University of Lincoln, and referencing contemporary sources including watercolours and letters by the Brontës, the Parsonage will undergo a major interior visual transformation led by historic interior design consultant Allyson McDermott of the McDermott Studio, Forest of Dean. The house will be restored to looking much as it did during the main period of the Brontë family’s occupation in the 1830s and 40s but will also include features introduced by Charlotte as part of her facelift for the house during the early 1850s when she began to spend some of the income she had earned from her novels Jane EyreShirley and Villette in making the Parsonage more comfortable.

“This is one of the most exciting projects to take place at the Parsonage in many years and is the culmination of a two year research project. There have been attempts in the past to present the Parsonage as the Brontës’ home, but no serious archaeological work has ever been carried out before. The new rigorous historical research and scientific analysis resulting from this project has informed bespoke wallpapers, new curtains and painstakingly woven rugs. Objects from the Brontë Society collections will be displayed for the first time in this new context and familiar works will be reinterpreted. The rooms of the house are going to be transformed and may well surprise our visitors”. Quote from Ann Dinsdale, Collections Manager, Brontë Parsonage Museum.

Quote from new Executive Director, Professor Ann Sumner:I am delighted to be taking up my new role at this exciting time and see the re-decoration taking shape. We now know so much more about how the Parsonage was presented when the Brontë family lived here and are pleased to be working with Allyson McDermott, benefitting from her wealth of experience restoring historic interiors. The newly refurbished rooms will enormously enhance the visitor experience at the Parsonage Museum and have inspired a wealth of learning events and an exhibition in 2013”.

Quote from Sally McDonald, Chairman, The Brontë Society Council: When the Trustees of the Brontë Society agreed this landmark re-decoration it set in motion a singular opportunity to learn more about the Brontës and their home. We are delighted that when the Parsonage reopens its door on February 9th we will be sharing more of that wonderful story with our members and our visitors”.

The newly refurbished Parsonage will reopen on Saturday 9th February featuring some exciting new displays.

The project has cost in the region of £60,000.

Contacts & Further Information:   
Ann Dinsdale (Collections Manager) 01535 640198 –

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