Kirkby Malzeard is first mentioned in the 1086 Domesday Book as 'Churchei', meaning 'church in the clearing' and then became Kirkby Malzeard, 'church in the bad or stoney clearing'. However there is nearby evidence of Stone Age farmers from 5000 years ago, local Bronze Age relics and a Roman presence.
The village has a strong history in its buildings with 20 Grade II listed. It also has one Grade I listed building: St Andrew's Church was first built in 1150 and continued to be extended until it was mainly destroyed by fire in 1908. Restoration work took two years and cost £5500.
The remains of the Norman Mowbray Castle, destroyed in the 12th century are evident in a mound on private land. Its historical importance is reflected in its status as a Scheduled Ancient Monument.
The Mechanics Institute was first built in 1848, with the present one built in 1852 to house a reading room and library and a larger room for dancing and concerts. It is still in active community use.
Greygarth Monument sits on Kirkby Malzeard moor to the west of the village. The first tower was built to mark the extinction of wolves from the area and it blew down in 1890. Its replacement was built in 1897 to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria and it was restored in 1984.
The majority of homes were built in the 19th century and follow a linear development down the main street. Post war development has filled in many of the vistas to the surrounding countryside. However it is still an attractive village, away from the main tourist route and has a strong community feel.