The Grouse’s Brontë Connection

The Grouse Inn is delighted to welcome so many visitors who are interested in our local history and wish to explore the famous Brontë’ countryside.

The Brontë’s were a 19th century literary family associated with Haworth. The sisters, Charlotte (born 21 April 1816), Emily (born 30 July 1818), and Anne (born 17 January 1820), are well known as a trio of sibling poets and novelists. They originally published their poems and novels under masculine pseudonyms, following the custom of the times practised by female writers. Their work appeared in 1846 under the masculine pseudonyms of Currer Bell (Charlotte), Ellis Bell (Emily) and Acton Bell (Anne). These were very uncommon forenames, but the initials of each of the sisters were preserved and the patronym could have been inspired by that of the vicar of the parish, Arthur Bell Nicholls.

Their stories immediately attracted attention, although not always the best, for their passion and originality. Charlotte's Jane Eyre was the first to know success, while Emily's Wuthering Heights, Anne's The Tenant of Wildfell Hall and other works were later to be accepted as masterpieces of literature.

The three sisters and their brother, Branwell, were very close and they developed their childhood imaginations through the collaborative writing of increasingly complex stories. The confrontation with the deaths, first of their mother, then of the two older sisters, marked them profoundly and influenced their writing.

Their fame was due much to their own tragic destinies as well as their precociousness. Since their early deaths, and then the death of their father in 1861, they were subject to a following that did not cease to grow. Their home, the parsonage at Haworth in Yorkshire, now the Brontë Parsonage Museum has become a place of pilgrimage for hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.

Brontë Country

From the patio of the Grouse Inn you get a fantastic vista across much of the moors where the Brontë Sisters would spend many hours walking.

The Brontë Sisters' father was the Reverend Patrick Brontë who preached at the nearby Haworth Church (St Michael and All Angels) and they lived in the Parsonage.

The Brontë Parsonage, Haworth

Although tantalisingly out of sight behind Penistone Hill, Brontë Parsonage Museum in Haworth is just 1¬º miles (2¬ºkm) away on a heading of 117¬∞ (East South-East) - map co-ordinates are 53.831¬∞N 1.956¬∞W

Top Withens

Widely believed to be the inspiration for Emily Brontë Wuthering Heights, the farm bears a plaque stating:

Top Withens. This Farmhouse has been associated with Wuthering Heights, the Earnshaw home in Emily Brontë’s novel.

The buildings, even when complete bore no resemblance to the house she described, but the situation may have been in her mind when she wrote of the moorland setting of the heights.

This plaque has been placed here in response to many Inquiries. Brontë Society 1964.

The now-derelict farmstead of Top Withens is visible from the Grouse Inn. Set your compass to 225° (South-West) and the ruins of Top Withens are 2½ miles (4 km) away - map co-ordinates are 53.815°N 2.030°W

Brontë Waterfalls and Bridge

The Brontë Waterfall is a small waterfall located about a mile south west of Stanbury. The area of outstanding beauty surrounding the waterfall is mainly moorland and farmland. Below the falls can be found an old stone bridge named Brontë Bridge across South Dean Beck.

In 1854 Charlotte Brontë wrote: "I had often wished to see it in its winter power, so we walked on. It was fine indeed; a perfect torrent racing over the rocks, white and beautiful!"

From the Grouse Inn on a heading of 205¬∞ (South South-West), the Brontë Waterfalls Brontë Bridge are just 1¬Ω miles (2¬Ω km) away - If you intend to walk there the map co-ordinates are: 53.819¬∞N 2.004¬∞W

Looking for Accommodation?

The Grouse Inn
Harehills Lane, Oldfield, Keighley,
West Yorkshire, BD22 0RX

Tel: 01535 643073

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