Skipton is surrounded by countryside, dramatic moorland in places mellow green hills in others, only adding its appeal.
As one of the finest English market towns, Skipton has the ability to weave its magic at any time of the year, especially Christmas when a Medieval Yuletide Festival takes place. Shopkeepers and stall holders dress in period costume, there is carol singing, medieval re-enactments, and lots to buy and see and eat. As the winter twilight descends and the Christmas lights come on, the atmosphere is enchanting.
Spring offers the sight of new-born lambs, Summer brings a variety of agricultural shows and events, Autumn provides Skipton with a blanket of golden leaves and scenic landscapes.
Skipton Market takes place on a Monday, Wednesday, Friday & Saturday and is held on the cobbled Market Setts, either side of Skipton’s High Street. The market consists of numerous individual traders selling everything from fruit & vegetables to clothing and household products.
In 1066AD Skipton became the property of the de Romille family, who later built a fortress castle there. The castle still stands today and is open to the public. This is but one of Skipton’s many tourist attractions.
With the completion of the Leeds-Liverpool Canal in 1816, Skipton was no longer just a market town but a centre for cloth weaving and commerce. Once used as a means of transporting imports and exports to and from ports of entry and exit, the Leeds-Liverpool Canal now takes on a different role as it caters for day trips along its picturesque waters.
The Skipton Waterway Festival is held every year and is usually a 3 day event attracting boats from the Skipton vicinity, Silsden area, Craven district, Yorkshire region and beyond. As well as thousands of visitors from all over, some say this is a major event in the North of England’s calendar and we think all will agree that this is a special occasion which is enjoyed by the local community, boaters and visitors to Skipton alike. Skipton could be called the “Venice of Yorkshire” as its position on the Leeds-Liverpool canal makes Skipton an ideal location to bring your boat and with many picturesque and tranquil miles of surrounding canal, were confident you’ll find the perfect place to moor your vessel (please always follow official guidelines when mooring on a canal-side).
Skipton has much to offer in the form of retail therapy, department stores, boutiques, coffee and tea houses, restaurants, the list goes on. A little known fact is that Skipton was home to Tom Spencer, who was a founder of what has become the Marks & Spencer retail empire. Skipton is perfect for mixing the civilities of shopping and taking afternoon tea in the town with a short jaunt on the surrounding moors.
From Skipton, via Skipton Railway station or road (approx. 27 miles drive), you can visit the cosmopolitan city of Leeds, with its Harvey Nichols flagship store and historic arcades filled with eclectic shops and boutiques. York can also be reach by rail or road (approx. 46 miles drive), with its abundant Viking history, racecourse and National Railway Museum. Harrogate (approx. 23 miles drive) is also within easy reach, where you can still take the waters in the old spa and then take tea at Bettys famous tearoom.
A vibrant nightlife can be enjoyed with Skipton providing an excellent choice of pubs, nightclubs and other social venues. From chic bars and nightclubs to traditional country pubs serving local ales. There is always plenty to see and do in Skipton.
For those who like to get out and about the Skipton area has a superb selection of Dales country walks including, Embsay Crag and Moors, Bolton Abbey, Skipton Moors, Winterburn Reservoir and much more.
Further to the fact that Tom Spencer (co-founder of Marks & Spencer) hails from Skipton, you may find it interesting to know that Sir Charles McMoran Wilson (1st Baron Moran, MC) was also born in Skipton. Sir Charles McMoran Wilson was famous for being Sir Winston Churchill’s personal physician. Also known as Lord Moran, Sir Charles served in the Royal Army Medical Corps during the First World War and was awarded the Military Cross in 1916, in 1942 during his impressive medical career he was knighted and later made Baron Moran in 1944. Lord Moran was also author of a book published in 1966 named “Winston Churchill: The Struggle for Survival, 1940-1965”. Another famous former resident of Skipton is Iain Macleod, Mr Macleod was appointed Chancellor of the Exchequer in June 1970 by the then Prime Minister Edward Heath, but sadly Iain Macleod died one month later while at home in 11 Downing Street.
If you’re looking for a location that is set in beautiful surroundings, full of history and offering almost every service and amenity, then look no further than Skipton.
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