A DATE has been set for the closure of a museum with strong links to the Brontes allowing the venue to host its annual Christmas event before finally shutting its doors.

Last month Kirklees Council took the decision to close down two museums, one of which is Red House Museum in Gomersal.

The Grade II-listed 17th century cloth merchant’s home was frequently visited by Charlotte Bronte and was featured in her novel, Shirley.

The Friends of Red House Museum group appealed to the council to allow them to stay open until Christmas.

And it has now been confirmed that the museum will close to the public on December 21, allowing them to host their traditional Red House At Christmas event one last time.

Jacqueline Ryder, chairman of the group, told the Telegraph & Argus: “We have just been informed by the council. It does mean that we can host our Christmas event, which will be on December 11. The house will be dressed in the style of a Victorian Christmas.

“It also means that we are no longer in limbo and can start planning the event and for the closure.”

Ward councillor Lisa Holmes? (Con, Liversedge and Gomersal) posted to a Facebook group which had been campaigning to save the museum from closure. She confirmed the closure date and described it as a “terrible loss” but hoped that as it is a listed building some of the history will be preserved.

“Sadly I write to inform you that Red House Museum will close its doors on 21st December,” she posted.

“What a wonderful piece of history we will be losing.

“The staff, volunteers and the Friends of Red House Museum Committee have worked so hard. They have hosted some fabulous events, as well as keeping the house and gardens looking so beautiful all year round.

“I hope you will join me in thanking them for all their hard work.”

The authority’s museums and galleries budget is being cut by half from April next year, and plans were therefore drawn up to restructure the service.

As well as Red House Museum, Dewsbury Museum is also to close, which is scheduled to take place this weekend.

Oakwell Hall and Country Park in Birstall and Bagshaw Museum are to stay and a new Huddersfield Museum and Art Gallery will be created.

In the short term, Huddersfield’s Tolson Museum and the current art gallery will be retained to maintain a presence in south Kirklees, but Tolson is also set to shut in the long-term.

Expressions of interest in the Red House and Dewsbury museum buildings which are no longer required are also being invited.

It is intended that the collections will be transferred to other museum buildings or to a storage facility.

Mrs Ryder said that other than the period furniture and items in the house, there are two things of interest due to the Bronte connection.

These are the windows in the dining room and a painting of Vesuvius, both of which are described in the 1849 novel.

Charlotte was a frequent visitor to Red House, which was owned at the time by the family of her close friend, Mary Taylor.

A spokesman for the council confirmed that the museum would close on December 21.