The Conservation Area was designated in 1973. It includes The Green, St Giles Church, Skelton Hall and Skelton Manor, which form the historic core of the village.
The Village Trust takes a particular interest in guarding its special character and supporting residents in caring
for its buildings, trees and open spaces.
Conservation Areas are defined and protected by planning law. They are built areas that are predominatley historic and traditional in character and are special enough to warrant protection.
The city of York Council, as a planning authority, has a statutory duty to preserve and enhance the special character of a Conservation area. Whilst Conservation status does include additional planning constraints and considerations for residents and planners alike, it is recognised that conservation is not about preventing all change but about managing it sympathetically.
A combination of interesting topography and street pattern, varied building forms and a well treed setting gives Skelton Conservation Area its attractive distinctly rural, restful character.
This is emphasised by its location just off the main A19 road, from which virtues of the village are unsuspected. The Conservation Area focal point is the Green; its undulating grassed mound and mature trees create almost a miniature landscape in its own right.
The Green provides a setting for St Giles Church with its attractive railings. Across from the Church the open, grassed area continues to the south-east, past The Wheelhouse. An attractive terrace of 19c cottages flank the west side of The Green with, in contrast, individual properties set in their own, walled grounds opposite. This variety epitomises Skelton, yet unified by the trees, boundary walls and the use of natural building materials to create a natural "flow" from one part of the village to another.
The main elements of the character and appearance of the area are:-
(1) The way that topography, mature trees, the street pattern and building forms create a varied, yet cohesive, village character.
(2) The qualities of individual buildings set in their own grounds, creating a "rural hideaway" atmosphere; and in contrast the groups of cottages that front onto the street elsewhere in the village.
(3) The way that boundary walls hedges, grass verges and roadside trees lead naturally from one part of the village to another.