Skipton is one of the best-preserved and most complete medieval castles in England, despite enduring a three-year siege in the Civil War.
After the battle of Marston Moor it was the only Royalist stronghold left in the north. At last the Governor, Sir John Mallory, negotiated a surrender, and on 21st December 1645 the garrison marched out with colours flying and trumpets sounding. Cromwell ordered the removal of the castle roofs; but only ten years later the owner, Lady Anne Clifford, was allowed to replace them - on condition they were not strong enough to bear firing cannon.
Today we can clearly read in the castle’s stones the story of this period of English history and of many earlier ones, for in Cromwell’s time Skipton was already ancient. For centuries the little market town huddled for safety beneath the castle walls. Successive Lords of Skipton lie buried in the Parish Church - the most famous was George Clifford, 3rd Earl of Cumberland, Champion to Queen Elizabeth I; one of her Admirals against the Armada. Come and explore this historic Castle: still fully roofed, it repays a visit at any time of year. With your Tour Sheet in hand, step back into Craven’s colourful past!