Whether you are a returning visitor or a first-timer, welcome to our website! Please take your time to have a good look around. If you can add anything to our knowledge and understanding of the area, please do make use of the “Leave a Reply” feature on the relevant page. If you have questions you would like to have answered or a more general comment you would like to make, please make use of the “Contact us” tab.

Happy Browsing!

Additions and other changes in 2017

New! 21st April – We have had some broken links reported recently. It is believed that all have been rectified. If you come across one that we’ve missed, please report it by using the Contact Us page. Thank you.

6th February – A new tab, “Articles”, has been added to the banner above. Some previous material has been moved to this new page. Two new articles, “Life after the workhouse” and “A Hike for Hannah” have been added.

6th January – Details of this year’s programme of Heritage Walks have been added here.

Additions and other changes in 2016

10th August 2016 – Details of our Heritage Open Day activities are now available here.

13th June 2016 – New searchable PDF file added to The Fallen of World War 1 giving a summary of the men listed on the Parish Roll of Honour plaque in St. Margaret’s, Brotton



All text and images on this website © Skelton History Group 2013-2015 (unless credited otherwise)

26 Responses to Welcome

  1. Sarah Redshaw says:

    Hello. I am so glad that this site exists. My great-grandparents lived and worked in Skelton. My great-grandfather was a groom at the castle. They lived in house # 13 until my grandmother was around 8 years old and the war forced so much change. My great-grandfather had to move to Corby and get a job in the Steel factory. Their names were Thomas and Mary Beck. Their daughter was Jean Beck. I am fascinated by this part of my family’s history and I am eager to look all through your site. Do you happen to know of a book that I could find that might have pictures of the castle (country house), stables (where my Great-grandfather worked) and the homes? Either as the estate is now or as they were in the early 1900’s? I would greatly appreciate any advice on how to find a good one. My grandmother, who is now in her late 80’s, would treasure it. Thank you.

  2. Sarah and I have entered into a dialogue via e-mails. I have already sent her some information and one photograph. Others will be following shortly.

  3. Steve Swales says:

    Greetings. My great grandfather, and two more generations back lived in North Skelton, at #20 Bolckow Street, until 1891, when his grandfather died, and shortly afterward, they emigrated to the USA. This last summer I had the pleasure to visit for a few days. We stayed in Brotton, and in one day visited Kilton Lane Cemetery, where my 4th great grandfather, William Swales, and other relatives are memorialized, and then walked down to North Skelton, by chance stumbling upon the Ironstone Mine ruins, where my great grandfather and his father had worked. We ended up down in North Skelton, and took pictures on Bolckow Street. Living at #20 in 1891, were Daniel Swales, born in 1809, his son Thomas Swales, wife Sarah Ann (Ward), and their children, Elizabeth, William Ward (my great grandfather), Daniel (who also died later in 1891, in the USA), and Mary Alice. Two other children, Thomas and Priscilla had died some years earlier. The Swales had become Primitive Methodists, and were involved in the building of the Primitive Methodist Chapel in North Skelton in 1881. One thing I’ve been unable to determine is where Daniel Swales was buried. I found records that the children, Thomas and Priscilla were buried at Skelton Cemetery, though I don’t know where this is, or if it even still exists. Daniel might also be buried there, or perhaps there was a Primitive Methodist burial ground in the area at that time. Any information you might be able to tell me about this would be most gratefully received. Thank you for creating and maintaining this site!

  4. Steve Swales says:

    One other thing, I forgot to mention. William Swales (c.1767-1835), is listed on his memorial stone as “of Skelton”, but I’ve been unable to confirm where or exactly when he was born. Any clues there would also be extremely welcome and appreciated.

  5. An e-mail dialogue has been started with Steve.

  6. Mack Skelton says:

    Why was the castle named Skelton?

  7. Steve Swales says:

    Similarly, Swales is either from “by the Swale”, or “Swallow Hill”. Both Swale and Swallow are probably from the Old Norse word Sval, which can mean swallow (the bird) or swift. So, blame it on the Vikings.

    • Mack Skelton says:

      I blame it on her (my wife I believe to be English/Norse) every day…lol Her last name is Pounds. I have this overwhelming feeling that she and I are going to have ancestry from the same region. Sad that our ancestors didn’t/couldn’t better preserve our lineage when they came to the United States.

  8. Steve Swales says:

    Yes. I’d say almost 100% sure your first Skelton ancestor was so-and-so OF Skelton, to distinguish him from so-and-so OF Stokesley, or somewhere else nearby. Many,many English names are the same.

  9. Lee-Deane Elmore says:

    I am researching my family history, and there was a Sir John Shelton, 13th Lord of Shelton that was born about 1249 in England. There is reference that he was on record as Sir John of Skelton Castle, Cumberland. He was Knight of the Sire of Cumberland in 1318. I know that Shelton was spelled Skelton and Schelton in some areas. Any idea if this John Shelton had anything to do with Skelton Castle? Or perhaps it was supposed to be Shelton Manor? Thanks.

    • Hi Lee-Deane,
      This is clearly a reference to the Skelton in Cumberland, England (modern day Cumbria) and not to Skelton-in-Cleveland. As far as I know, there was no link between the two communities. The place name derives from Old English scelf-tun, meaning a farmstead on a shelf of level ground. There are several other villages of the same name elsewhere in Yorkshire. Shelton has the same derivation.

  10. Richard says:

    Hi there my grandparents lived in Harker street during th 1970s and I had many a great holiday there everything was so different for me living in essex I used to hang around with the boy next door and he would teach me all about pigeons and racing them,we would walk through the woods to saltburn go on the pier and on one of the arcade machines you could win a single ciggarette which we would smoke walking back also I saw old abandoned mine workings I loved my time up there so much that now in my late tos I still come up there yearly to look around and remember, also have a drink in the green inn,

  11. Richard says:

    Hi there will do we are up there yearly R

  12. Rebecca Cacioppo says:

    I wonder if you could help me. I’ve recently moved in to Newlands Farm on Airy Hill Lane and was wondering if there were any old photographs or maps due to the age of the house? Can you advise where I should start as I’ve no idea!
    Thank you in advance

  13. ron bruce says:

    hi there .is there any document to say if my ancestors had a castle at castleton . thats provided my grandmas . were good / 3yrs on crusade is a long time. never mind the years after.
    iam i right in thinking peter de brus the 2nd was the keeper of scarborough castle for the king.
    john? family and history like your selfs is my passion . regards ron .

    • Hi Ron,
      Thanks for contacting the Group. The most authoritative source about the Brus family is “The Brus Family in England and Scotland 1100-1295” by Ruth M Blakely, published by The Boydell Press in 2005. Although Ruth is an academic, the book is written in a very readable style. It will answer your questions, and many of the ones you haven’t yet thought of!

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