In Brief

Lily Cole in spat with Bronte Society snobs

Member threatens to resign over supermodel’s role in celebrations to mark bicentenary year of Emily Bronte’s birth

Actress and model Lily Cole has responded with Victorian eloquence to criticism of her appointment as a creative partner to the Bronte Society, asking that her work be “judged on its own merits”.

The appointment of Cole – who, the The Guardian notes, has a double first in History of Art from Cambridge – was meant to mark the bicentenary year of Emily Bronte’s birth.

Instead, it triggered controversy when Bronte Society member Nick Holland pointed out that the model was not an author and threatened to resign over her “rank farce” appointment, The Times says.

“What would Emily Bronte think if she found that the role of chief ‘artist’ and organiser in her celebratory year was a supermodel?” Holland wrote on his website. “Being trendy is the ultimate aim, with the Brontes themselves relegated to the sidelines.”

Cole, 30, has responded with dignity and grace. “I would not be so presumptuous as to guess Emily’s reaction to my appointment... Yet I respect her intellect and integrity enough to believe that she would not judge any piece of work on name alone.”

The model is also making a short film for the museum about Wuthering Heights anti-hero Heathcliff, which will address gender politics and women’s rights, says The Daily Telegraph.

Several Twitter writers have reacted to what they view as snobbery:

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