5 reasons why you should move to Skipton
PUBLISHED: 00:00 12 November 2019
Neighbourhood know-how, places and people
Indisputably the 'Gateway to the Dales', Skipton is uniquely placed, with the verdant beauty of Wharfedale and the picturesque villages of Grassington, Burnsall and Kettlewell all just a short drive away. Take the A59 and you can travel east to Harrogate or west into Lancashire - and if you opt for the train you can be in Leeds in 40 minutes or London in just three hours on its daily direct service. Transport links aside, it is Skipton's wide, tree-lined, cobbled High Street - once the setting for weekly livestock sales and now boasting one of the country's best markets - which is its highlight. With the incredibly well preserved medieval Skipton Castle and 12th century Parish Church at the head of the High Street, Skipton really is picture postcard perfect.
Skipton's industrial heritage as home of the famous Sylko thread established the town's healthy transport connections. Well served with direct trains to Leeds, Bradford and London, the town also boasts a direct link to the historic Settle-Carlisle line. For those who prefer to travel at a more leisurely pace, the Leeds Liverpool canal passes through the heart of the town offering several barge trips and barge rental opportunities.
Bag a Property
With prices starting at £130K for a two bedroomed former mill worker's terrace house in Middle Town - famous as not only being the hill from which Cromwell fired his artillery on Skipton Castle, but also for being part of the backdrop for Monty Python's Every Sperm is Sacred, the town offers something for every budget.
An area termed The Raikes close to the town's grammar schools and Aireville Park offers the bigger budget residential properties.
Walking is definitely the best way to uncover Skipton's beauty and heritage. A short stroll from the head of the High Street takes you to its 14th century Corn Mill and a dramatic rear view of Skipton Castle which then leads on to Skipton Castle Woods - an ancient woodland with a variety of walks, trails and year round events.
Skipton's canal tow path also provides 4 km of town centre canal side walking which not only gives insight into its industrial heritage but takes in the Canal Basin - a plaza and hub for barge trips which also hosts a twice monthly farmers' market and annual Waterway Festival.
Long a thriving commercial centre for the Dales' communities it serves, Skipton supports a good mix of unique independents and well-known brands - of which the luxury department store, Rackhams has long been a fixture. Moving away from the High Street; Victoria Quarter, Coach Street, Otley Street and Craven Court all have a tremendous selection of shops, including quirky designer shoe outlet, eshoes whose mesmerising window displays of the latest Ruby Shoo, Irregular Choice and Art shoes always draw a crowd. Vintage accessories and homewares store Magpie, located behind the Town Hall, is also worth seeking out, stocking Annie Sloan paints as well as running Annie Sloan workshops.
Just off the High Street, Mill Bridge, in the oldest quarter of Skipton is home to the unique Mill Bridge Gallery and the award winning Stanforths, 'Celebrated Pork Pie Establishment'.
Café & Cocktails
For the best cocktails, food and monthly live 'Gin & Jazz', take a look at Alexander's Bar & Kitchen located at the top of the High Street, boasting heated terraces and lovely views over the canal and hills beyond.
For hand-pulled pints and Timothy Taylors, the award winning The Woolly Sheep Inn is definitely worth a look. Vinyl lovers will enjoy The Sound Bar, a popular bar which sells vintage vinyl as well as hosting live band sessions every Sunday. For first class coffee and brunch try The FlipSide Creperie on Swadford Street or Elsworth's Kitchen on Coach Street, owned and run by Yorkshire chef, Bruce Elsworth.