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With a dozen novels and critical studies of Charles Dickens and Christie already published, he returned to Britain in 1984 to concentrate on his fiction, adopting the city of Leeds as his new home. He became an active member of the Crime Writers' Association, in particular its northern chapter, and also threw himself into the Brontë Society, based at the parsonage at Haworth, of which he became vice-chairman and then chairman. His devotion to the Brontës resulted in an illustrated biography of Emily Brontë for the British Library in 2000 and A Brontë Encyclopedia, compiled with his wife and published this summer [first published in 2007), as well as two crime novels: The Missing Brontë and the cheekily titled The Corpse at the Haworth Tandoori. (Mike Ripley)The Keighley News carries the story of the visit to the Brontë Parsonage Museum paid by Jamie Cullum.
The Brontë Parsonage Museum’s musical heritage attracted a jazz singer-songwriter who is touring the country for a new radio programme.The Brontë Parsonage website has an article on the Society's presence at the North Kirklees Festival:
Jamie Cullum, the presenter of Jamie’s Piano Pilgrimage, dropped into Haworth to find out about the Brontës’ love of music and the importance of the piano in the lives of Victorian women.
He tried out the parsonage’s ‘Brontë Piano’, which is thought to have been originally bought at the request of Branwell Brontë by his father Patrick.
A Brontë Society spokesman said: “Jamie played some beautiful tunes, and was carefully prepped and watched over by piano conservator Ken Forrest, who had tuned the piano for the event.
“Brontë Society executive director professor Ann Sumner and collections manager Ann Dinsdale were also present to offer Jamie lots of information about the Brontës and their love of music. Ann even presented him with a beautiful copy of Wuthering Heights.
“Jamie seemed to enjoy his time at the parsonage very much, and said the piano was one of the most extraordinary he had ever played or seen.
“He said the instrument has a very unique touch, and that it was ‘incredibly pure, with an amazing clarity to the notes’.”
Professor Sumner was the inaugural speaker, launching the weekend of events with a very interesting lecture entitled ‘The Brontës and the Railway’. In the talk Professor Sumner considers the impact that the railway had upon the sisters and discusses the journeys they took, the investments they made in railway shares as well as their brother Branwell’s employment on the railway. She finally considered the impact the railway coming to Haworth had made on literary tourism in the area. The lecture was followed by a lively question session and the audience included David Pinder, Chair of the North Kirklees Literary Festival; Organiser, Hilary Wainwright and Mr S. R. Davidson, Deputy Lord Lieutenant of West Yorkshire.China Daily discusses the China-UK relations:
Mr Pinder, spoke very highly of Ann, saying that he was 'very grateful to Ann for getting the festival off to such a splendid start, particularly because it highlighted an aspect of the Brontës that many of us had not considered'.
"This summer we witnessed a really exciting series of China-UK cultural exchanges," [Ambassador Liu Xiaoming] said.According to Express this is one of the 'top 10 facts about cats':
"We have enjoyed the ballet production of Jane Eyre in London by the Shanghai Ballet Company. Then there was the premiere of The Tragedy of Coriolanus by the Beijing People's Art Theatre at the Edinburgh International Festival." (Zhang Chunyan and Xie Songxin)
6. Charlotte Brontë, author of Jane Eyre, had a cat called Tiger. (William Hartston)Yesterday London saw a flashmob of Kate Bush's Wuthering Heights, as told by the Time Out London blog. Hopefully we will see a video of it soon. Blitz Quotidiano (Italy) mentions the influence of Jane Eyre and other novels on Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin. Leesburg Today carries the story of a local printing press which has been printing some classics, novels by Charlotte Brontë among them. Wormbook reviews Jane Eyre 2011 while Bookgoonie posts about April Lindner's Jane. Reading Log has a post on Agnes Grey. The Brontë Parsonage Facebook page shows the Brontës' warming pan, currently on loan to the museum.