Skipton Castle

Skipton Castle is a fully intact medieval castle, sitting at the top of the market town's award winning high street.

Skipton Castle

Skipton Castle*

Skipton Castle is that rarest of ancient buildings, a medieval castle still intact and pretty much as it would have been in the middle ages.

One of a range of imposing castles built in the Yorkshire Dales in medieval times, it sits on a raised location, at the top of the town’s High Street and was built to protecting the surrounding countryside from marauders.

Take away the town and the castle would dominate the area.

* Photo by Andy Hay


In brief

Location: Skipton High Street
Features: Intact medieval castle with a roof and the rooms intact
Facilities: Toilets, tea room, picnic area, guided tours available for parties (no extra charge)
Entry Charges: £6.50 for adults, £3.90 for children (under 5’s free). Discounts for family groups, students, the over 60s & larger parties.

The first Skipton Castle

The castle was first built here in 1090 by a Norman baron, Robert de Romville, to repel Scottish marauders. The settlement of Skipton expanded under the protection of the fort. Ownership of the castle passed, in 1310, to the Clifford family who further expanded it including adding the huge round towers either side of the gate.

The Civil War

It played a major part in the English Civil War, with the Royalists, under the command of Sir John Mallory, based there. The castle withstood two major sieges by parliamentarians, the last for 3 years before honourably surrendering in December 1645. After the surrender it was ordered to be destroyed but, fortunately, just the roof was dismantled and the walls lowered. 12 years later Lady Anne Clifford got permission from Cromwell to repair it although she was required to make changes – the walls had to be thinner and the roof could not be strong enough to have cannon on it.

Skipton Castle today

The castle is in superb condition, fully roofed and giving visitors a clear vision of what it must have been like in medieval times.

The ticket office is just through the gatehouse. Once through the entrance the full splendour of the castle becomes apparent. With your ticket comes a tour sheet (in 9 languages) which explains where to go, what you are looking at, and includes an array of interesting facts and illustrations.

Opening times

Open daily from 10am (Sunday 12 noon), except for 25 December with last admission at 6pm (October – February 4pm).


Skipton Castle, Skipton, North Yorkshire BD23 1AW
01756 792442 (+44 1756 792442)