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.



Make Do & Mend

Bank Holiday Monday 31st August, 11am – 3pm, free
Make Do & Mend is as big now as it was in 1945 – discover ideas to recycle and re-use as well as ways of making decorative and creative things around the home.

Sales stalls, craft demos, talks, and artists all sharing ideas – new and old – about recycling.

Teddy Tours – now a permanent activity for children!

Borrow one of our lonely teddy bears who will tour the school with you. Bring your camera or smartphone to take some pictures too.
Cost: £2 (£1.50 when you bring your own teddy).

Book Corner

Thursday 23 July – Monday 31 August

Thursdays – Sundays 10am – 4pm
Hundreds of hardback books for sale covering many themes including natural history, warfare, and railway history.

The Wilderspin Centre – Heritage Open Days 2015

Sunday 13th September, 11am – 3pm
Find out what the Queen Street School Preservation Trust has in store for the neighbouring chapel building. Designed by architect Joseph Wright in a flamboyant Romanesque Revival style, the Primitive Methodist Chapel was opened in 1867. The building is open for viewing today with an opportunity to see how it is currently used and what the Trust’s vision is for its future adaptation to a community performance space. Visit the School Museum too where refreshments are available in the coffee shop.

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