These are two of the nicest people in the world and I'm proud to call them friends, Julie and Steve Brown with their daughter Kizzy.
They bought themselves a very old house that has a very impressive history.

Ponden Hall

Ponden Hall was built on the site of an older building in 1638 by Robert Heaton. The Heatons had lived in the area for several generations before this, though, at least, probably further up the hill. In 1801 a major extension was built on to the house, by another Robert Heaton (every other generation named its heir Robert).  

Ponden Great Hall

  Emily Bronte was a friend of the Heatons during the 1830s and 40s, and visited the house regularly to use its extensive library - the biggest in West Yorkshire, supposedly, including a first folio Shakespeare. Studies have been done on the contents of the library (a list of its contents still exists) and compared with themes running through Wuthering Heights, to see what influences she might have had. There's a pear tree in the back garden that's supposed to have been planted for her by another Robert Heaton.

What is left of the, then, extensive Library




View from the kitchen window showing the reservoir

  The three last Heaton brothers died off at the end of the 19th century, with no male heirs, and the Hall was sold as a farm, then to the water board, who were building the new reservoir. The water board sold it back to farmers in the 1930s, then it was sold to Sam and Peggy Dyson (Peggy still lives opposite, and her daughter Kathleen lives up the hill); then to Brenda and Rod Taylor, who ran it as a centre for studying weaving, and a B&B; then to us!  
      It's supposed to have been the model for the geographical position of the house Thrushcross Grange in Wuthering Heights, but many believe the interior to have been the model for the interior of Wuthering Heights itself. It's supposed to have two ghosts - one a flaming barrel that rolls down the hill then disappears when it hits the wall; the other a grey, bearded man with a lantern who foretells doom in the family. We've never seen either, and nor has Brenda...