Welcome to Wilderspin School


The Wilderspin National School was built in 1844 and was championed by the educational pioneer and teacher Samuel Wilderspin who designed, equiped and taught in the school.

The school closed in 1978 and fell into disrepair.  Restoration of the School was completed in 2009 and now stands as a celebration of the life and work of Samuel Wilderspin, for the benefit of the people of Barton upon Humber, North Lincolnshire and elsewhere.

The school is a family-friendly museum that welcomes visitors of all ages to experience a slice school life in a bygone age. Located in Barton-upon-Humber, the school museum offers, through role-play, hands-on exhibits and talks, an authentic and memorable experience of teaching in the 19th and 20th centuries.



The Singular Exploits of Sherlock Holmes

Saturday 10th October, 7.30pm, Joseph Wright Chambers (Wilderspin Citadel)
An affectionate and humorous homage to the world’s greatest sleuth of all time. The great detective springs back to life in this show of villainous rogues and vintage thrills! Hear the dashing hero recount highlights of his crime-busting career, and some fascinating snippets of his life and times, the adversaries he has faced and the mysteries he has solved.

Performed by Don’t Go Into The Cellar! – the British Empire’s finest practitioners of theatrical Victoriana in a macabre vein. They enjoyed the setting of their last show here as part of Barton Arts 2014 and they asked to come back.

The performance will take place in the Joseph Wright Chambers – our first floor auditorium next door to the School Museum. Bring a cushion for a softer ride!
Cost: Adults £8.00, children under 16 £5.00, family* £22.00
(Wilderspin Centre – Citadel. Bring a cushion for extra comfort! )

The Soldiers of Barton in the First World War

Friday 16th October, 7.30pm Assembly Rooms
Part of the Barton upon Humber Civic Society 2015 Programme.
Based on research over many years, and drawing on an extensive catalogue of family photographs, Laurie Robinson talks about the Barton Territorials – including many former pupils from the Church School. This talk coincides, almost to the day, with the centenary of one of the worst days in the War for Barton men.
Cost: £2 (Civic Society members free)

Ghostly Tales – Museums at Night 2015

Friday 30th October, 6.30pm
Dare you spend Halloween at the School? Come and listen to some spooky stories in Mr. Wilderspin’s Schoolroom.
£3 (£2.50 for daring customers wearing Halloween costume)

Bless ‘Em All

This event scheduled for Saturday 31st October has unfortunately been cancelled

Museum Exhibits

From interactive exhibitions to an original Victorian classroom. Here is a taster of some of the interesting exhibits you can find during your visit.

Wilderspin Exhibits

Schools Programme

Our Schools Programme has been developed to provide children with an exciting way of engaging with the history of Victorian school life.

Schools programme

History of the School

Learn about Samuel Wilderspin and the Wilderspin National Schools and how his innovations gradually transformed schooling for children of all ages.

Wilderspin History
Find Out More