Welcome to Wilderspin School


The Barton National & Infants School was built in 1844. The Infant School was championed by the educational pioneer and teacher Samuel Wilderspin who designed, equipped and taught here.

This model school was the last of two thousand infant schools set up by Wilderspin across the British Isles. It is unique – few other buildings associated with Wilderspin have survived.

Begin your tour in the 1970s classroom for a flavour of school life at the time the building closed, pause in the National School classroom for a taste of Victorian childhood, then contemplate Wilderspin’s ground-breaking methods in his Infants’ Schoolroom and Playground of 1845.

We are a family-friendly museum, fully wheelchair-accessible and with a stylish café – The Old School Canteen. Visitors of all ages will experience school life from a bygone age – with lots for children to see and touch while grownups can reminisce and reflect on their own memories of school.

Located in the historic town of Barton-upon-Humber, close to the Humber Bridge, the museum makes a great place to start your exploration of the town and South Humber Bank



Art on the Railings

Saturday 24 June, 10am – 4pm

Wilderspin, Steelrooms and Scunthorpe Art Groups display their work. Artists will be working in the playground and are happy to discuss their work. Come and find out about the Art Group that meets every week in the Joseph Wright Hall, part of the Wilderspin School Museum.

Free admission


3D Stop Motion Animation Workshop

Saturday 24 June, 9.30am – 4pm

Nominated Barton school children will be given the chance to work with author and illustrator Andrew Sanders.


Clare Teal and her Trio celebrate Doris Day

Saturday 24 June, 8 pm in the Joseph Wright Hall

Barton Arts presents award winning singer and BBC Radio 2 presenter Clare Teal who has turned her attention to one of the world’s greatest musical stars, the iconic and much loved Doris Day. The show is an entertaining, joyful journey through the musical life of one of the biggest legends of Hollywood. Songs include: Secret Love, Move Over Darling, Perhaps Perhaps Perhaps, and Deadwood Stage. A spectacular tribute to a great star.

£20 in advance £22 on the door (members £19) Bring a cushion!
Tickets can only be purchased in person from The Ropewalk, Maltkiln Road or online at bartonarts.co.uk


The Graham Saunders Lecture: Cowboys, Indians and all that Jazz

Tuesday 27 June, 2pm to 5pm in the Aelberry Building

Graham Saunders’ annual music lecture looks at the origins and influences of American Music. £5

Tickets can only be purchased in person from The Ropewalk, Maltkiln Road or online at bartonarts.co.uk


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