A HISTORIC pub at the top of Haworth's Main Street closed its doors last week.

The Black Bull shut on Monday August 6, but the pub's owners say they are now working on finding a new licensee to take over and reopen the premises as soon as possible.

The prominent pub, which appears in many professional photographs and paintings of this part of the village, was a regular haunt of Branwell Bronte. It is owned by Ei Group plc, which has confirmed the closure.

A spokesman for the firm said: "We're working hard to find a new licensee to take on the pub on a five-year tenancy, which is the standard period for us.

"But it is possible that we will get a short term tenant in there to keep the doors open."

The pub includes a beer garden, a restaurant and three rooms to let.

Commenting on the business, the regional manager for Ei Group said: "The Black Bull enjoys a loyal local trade within Haworth. It also benefits from being a tourist destination for anyone interested in the Brontes, as the family lived in the parsonage behind the pub.

"The family’s wayward son, Branwell Bronte, regularly frequented the Black Bull and allegedly his ghost, among others, is still around.

"An experienced publican with good ambition and drive is required here.

"They should have the skills to re-launch the pub as the hub of the community during the quieter months, and have the stamina to deal with the tourists in the spring and summer."

Councillor David Mahon, chairman of Haworth, Cross Roads and Stanbury Parish Council, said: "It is sad that the pub has closed because it's an iconic pub in the village with a lot of history attached to it.

"It's important for Haworth to be able to maintain it as a public house and I hope to see it open again as soon as possible.

"The Black Bull does seem to be popular enough with visitors, but then it's not easy to be in the pub trade these days.

"Haworth may be busy enough in the spring and summer, but of course it's heavily geared towards the tourist trade, and during night time and autumn and winter the village can get a lot quieter for businesses."

Worth Valley ward councillor Rebecca Poulsen said: “With its Bronte connection and also because of its location the pub is a key historical point in the village.

“It does have competition but it has a unique selling point.

“The last thing we’d want is to see it all boarded up and closed down, that would be absolutely dreadful.

“The pub has had a number of temporary managers over the years, so what it needs is someone to take it on for the long-term.”