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About Us

Craven College, Skipton

Craven College – a Further Education College based in Skipton, North Yorkshire, “The Gateway to the Dales”. Our unique position – at the juncture of West Yorkshire and East Lancashire enables us to offer a variety of further and higher education courses, including apprenticeships, undergraduate degrees, part-time adult education and courses for business.

Craven College started life in 1825 as the Skipton Mechanics Institute on the High Street in Skipton. During the Second World War, the Skipton Art School and Skipton Technical Institute were established. In 1954 the Skipton Art School and Technical Institution become the Craven Institute for Further Education. In 1974, the College was renamed the Craven College of Adult Education and the full-time courses flourished mainly leading to secretarial work, hospitality and catering, social work and small business management. 

The Aireville Campus was developed in 1989 adjoining Aireville School (now The Skipton Academy). The Auction Mart Campus was later developed to accommodate all land-based courses and The Aviation Academy was established in Yeadon at Leeds Bradford Airport.

Tyro Training was established in 2003 offering flexible training, consultancy and support to business across the North of England. Its HQ at Craven Cattle Mart in Skipton.

The Animal Management Centre was opened for students in 2018 with specialist rooms for aquatics, invertebrates, nocturnals, reptiles, amphibians and small mammals.  From its premises in Ripon, Evolve supports young people from across North Yorkshire with social, emotional and behavioural difficulties and offers full Study Programmes, with a focus on work experience and skills for employment. 

In 2020, Craven College became an integral part of the Yorkshire and Humber Institute of Technology – representing significant investment in training resources on the Skipton campus to support education in digital skills such as cyber-security, digital infrastructure, multi-media, software development and gaming. 

Our newest addition, Craven Arena officially opened in 2022. The facility offers training for students, stable management courses and can host unaffiliated Dressage, Combined Training and Show Jumping. Craven Arena is the ideal location for public events, clinics, masterclasses, and lecture demonstrations and we work with all equine disciplines and clubs.

Key facts

Over 3,700 students
on full-time, part-time and apprenticeship programmes

5 campuses
across North and West Yorkshire

£1.25m investment
in estates and facilities since 2017

Over 400 members of staff
employed across all campuses

Our Mission

Enriching lives through learning

Our Vision

To deliver and develop high-quality learning opportunities for all through an aspirational team who collaborate with our key stakeholders in a well-connected and resourced, sustainable learning and working environment.

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