Wirksworth Junior School, Wash Green, was constructed in 1912 and designed by George Henry Widdows. It is similar in plan to The Croft, Alfreton [SMR 16218] and The Glebe, South Normanton [SMR 12817], having a central hall with four classroom wings at the corners, although the school at Wash Green is smaller. It has had little alteration. (1)
A grade II listed elementary school built in 1912. It was designed by George Widdows, architect to Derbyshire's Education Committee from 1904 and Chief Architect to Derbyshire County Council in 1910-1936. It is built of red brick laid in English garden wall bond, rendered and painted above cill level, with tile dressings and tiled roofs and brick chimneys. The school is a butterfly plan, with central octagonal hall and four wings, each with a cross wing at the end with slightly advanced gable facing inwards. The school is built in the Arts and Crafts style, with steeply pitched roofs and low eaves. The opposing V shaped elevations to north and south are the same. The north-east and south-east facing elevations are of one and a half storeys, with two hipped dormers with casement windows above a three arched arcade, now glazed. All windows are wooden, with small panes, and retain their original openings, including hopper openings to the lower panes. Some original cast iron rainwater hoppers also survive. The east wing corridors were originally verandahs, and although now enclosed, the octagonal wooden supports on concrete octagonal bases still survive, as does the exposed brickwork, now internal, and windows. Wirksworth Junior School is designated at Grade II, for the following principal reasons:
* It is a notable example of the work of George Widdows, who is nationally acknowledged as a leading designer of schools in the early 20th century and an exponent of advanced ideas on school planning and hygiene.
* This school is an early and rare example of Widdows' butterfly plan type. The original plan form remains clearly legible and has not undergone significant alteration.
* It retains all of the notable elements of its original design and is very little altered. The later enclosure of the verandah corridors has been achieved without the loss or permanent concealment of original fabric.
* The exterior is of distinctive architectural quality and displays interesting massing, close attention to detail and the well-crafted use of materials.
* The interior retains a number of original fixtures and fittings of special interest, including tiling, built in cupboards and fireplace surrounds.
See Listed Building description for more details. (2)