How we work, and what we aim to achieve
The Brontë Society was established in 1893 and opened its first museum in 1895. It is a company limited by guarantee (number 73855), having been incorporated in 1902 and is registered as a charity (number 529952). The liability of the Members in the event of the Society being wound up is limited to a sum not exceeding £1 each. Membership is open to all those having an interest in the lives and works of the Brontës. The number of members varies from time to time and is currently between 1500 and 1600.
To see our Articles of Association, access the download by clicking on the downloads menu, left.
Registered office: Brontë Parsonage Museum, Church Street, Haworth, Keighley, West Yorkshire BD22 8DR
The governing body of the Brontë Society is a board of directors of the company who are also trustees of the charity, known as the Council. There is provision for the appointment to the governing body of a maximum of 12 trustees to include an Honorary Treasurer, an Honorary Secretary to the Council, and an Honorary Publications Officer The Council appoints committees to give advice and recommendations but without executive powers. Currently, there are five committees: Governance, Finance, Membership, Museum and Publications & Conference. Other committees may be set up from time to time at the discretion of Council. The day-to-day running of the Brontë Parsonage Museum, in accordance with agreed budgets, is delegated to the Executive Director. The decisions of Council may be reviewed by the Society in General Meeting.
Trustees are elected by the members of the Brontë Society. Any person not disqualified for legal reasons from acting as a company director or charity trustee, who has been a member of the Brontë Society for at least two years at the date of their nomination, is eligible to stand for election. Nominees must have a proposer and a seconder, who must both be paid-up members of the Brontë Society. All trustees are elected for a term of three years. No trustee, whether an Honorary Officer or an Ordinary Trustee may stand for more than three consecutive terms of office. At the first meeting of the Council following the Annual General Meeting the trustees elect one of their number to serve as Chair of Council.
All new trustees are required to attend an induction training session and are expected to undertake appropriate training during their period of office.
Sir James Aykroyd
Rev Peter Mayo-Smith (Honorary Treasurer)
Catherine Rayner (Honorary Publications Officer)
John Thirlwell (Chair)
You can read more about our trustees here.
President: Dame Judi Dench
Vice Presidents: Mollie Davidson; Brian Wilks; Dr Patsy Stoneman; Audrey Hall
Objectives and aims
The Brontë Society was formed In December 1893 for the purpose of promoting interest in the Brontë family of Haworth and their works. From the beginning the Society sought to acquire and preserve manuscripts and artefacts, and from April 1895 the Society opened its first Museum in Haworth. In 1928, Haworth Parsonage was gifted to The Brontë Society, which has run the Brontë Parsonage Museum since then. The charitable objects of the Society are:
1. The promotion of interest in the life and works and preservation of artefacts of whatever nature of the Brontë family, formerly resident in Haworth, Yorkshire
2. The establishment and maintenance of a permanent museum for the promotion of such interest and the enjoyment of the public
3. The examination, preservation, publication and illustration of the memoirs and literary remains of the Brontë family and if thought fit, of other authors, and the collection, renovation and preservation of books, pamphlets, manuscript, engravings, paintings, drawings, photographs, clothing, furniture and other artefacts and objects relating to the same
4. The acquisition by donation, purchase, or otherwise of a library and museums and galleries, and the use, maintenance, management and extension thereof
5. The holding of meetings at and for the inspection and examination of places rendered interesting by their association with the alms of the Society, and
6. To do all such things as are incidental or conducive to the attainment of the above objects or any of them
The Society's vision is: To make the Brontës accessible, meaningful and a creative inspiration to the widest possible range of people.
Its mission statement is: The Brontë Society will sustain and develop its international membership, preserve the Brontë Parsonage Museum, conserve and expand its collections and promote access to these through a range of exciting programmes and activities that will inform, inspire and encourage participation in the Society's work. In so doing, the Parsonage Museum will be established as a creative centre, celebrating the heritage of the Brontës' lives and works, and also their contemporary significance to all ages, abilities, and social and cultural backgrounds