Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
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Statutory Address:

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

North Lincolnshire (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:
TA 03168 22128




Former National Infants, Boys and Girls School of 1844-45, designed by William Hey Dykes junior of Hull and Wakefield, architect, with Samuel Wilderspin, educationalist and headmaster, for the Church of England and the National Society for the Education of the Poor in the Principles of the Established Church. Pickard and Willington of Barton, builders. 1935 addition to rear in matching style and materials. Red brick in Flemish bond with stone dreesings to front and right return (Infant School). Welsh slate roof. Tudor Revival style. H-shaped on plan. Infants School to right, Boys to left and girls to centre; later infill to rear centre and short projecting wing to rear left. Single storey, 5-bay symmetrical front with gabled central porch and projecting gabled wings. Plinth, quoins. Porch has double board door in double-chamfered Tudor-arched surround with hoodmould; pointed-arched inner doorway with chamfered stone surround. Flanking bays have pairs of cross-windows. Wings each have a single large 5-light mullioned and transomed window with a hood-mould, and finely-carved stone tablet above with arms in a sunken panel with a cusped surround (Royal Arms to left, arms of Rev. George Uppleby, rector, to right). Inner elevations of wings, facing centre, have a single board door in a chamfered 4-centred arch. Windows have wooden mullions and transoms in chamfered stone reveals; mostly boarded up at time of re-survey. Porch and wings have stone-coped gables with shaped kneelers and gablets at the apexes. Five ridge ventilators with cone finials; roof stack to front right. Side and rear elevations have mulllioned and transomed windows in stone and moulded brick surrounds with stone sills. Stone-coped dwarf wall to front carrying cast-iron railings with a single top rail, shaped finials and scrolled rear supports (further section of railings stored in school); central gateway has elaborate openwork cast-iron piers with corniced cap.

INTERIOR: 4-centred arched doorways, exposed plain roof trusses in entrance passage and above later suspended ceilings in rooms; three C19 cast-iron fireplaces with shafted surrounds, pointed aches, frieze and cornice. Infant schoolroom has movable partition and later panelled dado at east end. Evidence of the former 'gallery' or stepped platform which was such an important feature of Wilderspin's schools can be seen on the rear walls.

HISTORY: The National School superseded a smaller one superintended by Isaac Pitman, the shorthand inventor. When originally opened it served 100 infants from 2 to 6 years old, 150 boys and 150 girls. It closed in 1978. It is especially notable for its connection with Samuel Wilderspin (1791-1866), the pioneer or 'inventor' of infant education and a figure of international standing. Wilderspin was more closely involved here than at any other school, raising support for it and contributing to the design and layout of the building and its grounds to suit his innovative educational approach. He was head of the Infant School and both his wife and daughter taught here with him; whilst here he also undertook training of infant teachers and nursery overseers, and wrote his definitive teaching manual 'Wilderspin's Manual for the Religious and Moral Instruction of Young Children'. In 1846 he was given a Civil List Pension for his 'services as the founder and promoter of Infant Schools'. The school building forms part of a fine group of Victorian public buildings in Queen Street and neighbouring High Street (qv).

SOURCES: R C Russell, A History of Schools and Education in Barton on Humber, 1 800-1 850,Barton, 1960; P McCann and F A Young, Samuel Wilderspin and the Infant School Movement, London, 1982; J. French, 'A Victorian Legacy', pp. 221-225, in Land, People and Landscapes, ed. D. Tyszka et al, Lincoln, 1991. Thomas A Markus, Early Nineteenth Century School Space and Ideology, International Journal of the History of Education, XXXII, 1996, 1, pp. 9-51. Margaret Rees, `Teachers and Teaching 1800-1860, Hitchin, 1999.

Listing NGR: TA0316822128


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number:
Legacy System:


Books and journals
McCann, P, Young, F A, Samuel Wilderspin and the Infant School Movement, (1982)
Rees, M, Teachers and Teaching 1800-1860, (1999)
Russell, R C, A History of Schools and Education in Barton on Humber 1800-1850, (1960)
Tyszka, D, Land, People and Landscapes, (1991)
Markus, A, 'International Journal of the History of Education' in Early Nineteenth Century School Space And Ideology, (1996), 9-51


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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Date: 08 Aug 2000
Reference: IOE01/02832/28
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Ian Wright. Source Historic England Archive
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