Skipton facts for kids
Quick facts for kidsSkipton
Skipton from Skipton Moor
|OS grid reference|
|• London||185 mi (298 km) SE|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||Yorkshire and the Humber|
Skipton (also known as Skipton-in-Craven) is a market town and civil parish in the Craven district of North Yorkshire, England. Historically in the West Riding of Yorkshire, it is on the River Aire and the Leeds and Liverpool Canal to the south of the Yorkshire Dales, 16 miles (26 km) northwest of Bradford and 38 miles (61 km) west of York. At the 2011 Census, Skipton had a population of 14,623.
One of the oldest mills in North Yorkshire, High Corn Mill is powered by the waters of Eller Beck, and dates to 1310 when it was owned by Robert de Clifford, 1st Baron de Clifford; at that point it was transferred to the powerful Clifford family by the then King Edward II. The mill as it appears today is only half of what used to exist when two mills were in operation to produce corn for the whole of Skipton. The mill has been completely redesigned, from the mill grounds to the buildings themselves. The outside walls of the mill have been sandblasted and the two main buildings of the old mill have been turned into flats from 2007 onwards, with one stand-alone building yet to be redesigned, touched or Sandblasted.
Skipton Castle was built in 1090 as a wooden motte-and-bailey by Robert de Romille, a Norman baron. In the 12th century William le Gros strengthened it with a stone keep to repel attacks from the Kingdom of Scotland to the north,: the castle elevated Skipton from a poor dependent village to a burgh administered by a reeve. The protection offered by Skipton Castle during the Middle Ages encouraged the urbanisation of the surrounding area, and during times of war and disorder the town attracted an influx of families. It is now one of the most complete and best preserved medieval castles in England and is open to the public.
Skipton became a prosperous market town, trading sheep and woollen goods: its name derives from the Old English sceap (sheep) and tun (town or village). A market stemming from its formative years still survives. In the 19th century, Skipton emerged as a small mill town connected to the major cities by the Leeds and Liverpool Canal and its branch Thanet Canal, (known locally as 'Springs branch canal'), but during the 20th century Skipton's economy shifted to tourism, aided by its historic architecture and proximity to the Yorkshire Dales. Since 1974, Skipton has been the seat of Craven District Council. The Skipton Building Society was founded in the town.
Culture and community
On Saturday 13 July 1901, a gala was held in Skipton to raise money for the Skipton and District Cottage Hospital, built at the time of Queen Victoria's Jubilee, held on the Brick Buildings Fields off Bailey Road. This was such a major event in the area that extra trains were provided to bring visitors to the town from miles around. After the formation of the National Health Service, with the hospital being funded from central government, the Skipton Charities Gala continued raising money for local charities and non-profit-making organisations. The gala, held every year on the second Saturday in June, starts with a procession through the town centre to Aireville Park, where live performance acts entertain the public, culminating in live music and a firework display.
Today, main events in Skipton include the annual heritage event Skipton Sheep Day which takes place on the first Sunday in July on Skipton High Street and showcases what Skipton and the Yorkshire Dales has to offer with demonstrations, stalls, entertainment and food on offer. Skipton Sheep Day Another main event on the annual calendar is Skipton Christmas Market which has been constantly voted in the top 10 of the UK's best Christmas Markets. Skipton Christmas Market All of Skipton's bustling event calendar can be found at Welcome To Skipton
Skipton Little Theatre is located near the town centre. The Mart Theatre opened in October 2005 with funding from the European Regional Development Fund, Yorkshire Forward, Craven District Council and the Arts Council England. It provides rural theatre, events and other facilities within a functioning Auction Mart.
In March 2014 The Sunday Times judged Skipton as the "best place to live" because of its proximity to the Yorkshire Dales, its great schooling and its independent shops along a ‘buzzing’ high street.
The local newspaper is the Craven Herald & Pioneer.
Skipton lies close to the junction of the A65 road (from Leeds to the Lake District) and the A59 from York to Liverpool. The north section (A65 & A59) of the £16.4 million Skipton Bypass opened in December 1981. The rest of the 6 miles (10 km) bypass (A629) opened in October 1982, greatly reducing journey times to the Dales.
Skipton railway station gives access southbound to regular services for Leeds and Bradford on the electrified Airedale Line; northbound services connect to Lancaster, Morecambe and Carlisle; the latter route is along the scenic Settle-Carlisle Railway, passing over the Ribblehead Viaduct. Skipton bus station was rebuilt in 2009.
The Leeds and Liverpool Canal runs through Skipton and is a popular destination for tourists, with walking and boat hire.
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