Alderwasley Hall School

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Alderwasley Hall School
Alderwaley Hall 617010 736ebf18.jpg
Established 1930 (Special School 1976)
Type Independent special school
Religion None (previously Roman Catholic)
Principal Angela Findlay
Location Alderwasley
DE56 2SR
England Coordinates: 53°04′34″N 1°30′50″W / 53.076°N 01.514°W / 53.076; -01.514
DfE number 830/6016
DfE URN 113021 Tables
Ofsted Reports
Staff 134
Students 96
Gender Coeducational
Ages 5–19
Colours Pink, Blue (Unofficial)
Sixth form Alderwasley Hall Sixth Form Centre

Alderwasley Hall School is an independent residential special school. The school is for children and young people aged 5 to 19 with Asperger's, speech and language difficulties and Acquired Brain Injury.[1] It is in and named after the village of Alderwasley in the Peak District, close to Wirksworth in Derbyshire, England.


A 15th century manor house, built by the Lowe family, which stood on the site was replaced with the present house in the late 18th century by Francis Hurt, (High Sheriff of Derbyshire 1788). His son, also Francis Hurt, was also High Sheriff. The house was made a Grade II listed building in 1967.[2] The hall remained in the Hurt family until 1930, when they moved to Casterne Hall, Staffordshire and it was sold to a Benedictine Order to be used as a school Which it remained until 1976 when it became a Special School.

Use as a school[edit]

The school is primarily a term time residential school, but takes day pupils primarily from Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire and Staffordshire. It also has on site a Children's Home for some pupils to live 52 weeks a year at the school.[3] Despite being a Private school the majority of funding comes from local education authorities (lea).

The school has extensive grounds, which include a series of ponds, which are home to ducks and geese. The parish church of All Saints lies close to the entrance of the school grounds.

The Current Headteacher is Angela Findlay who took over from Veronica Jenkins in 2009.

It is owned by the SENAD Group based Derby who run other schools children and young people with learning difficulties.[4]

Alderwasley Hall in about 1905

The School suffers from poor exam results with the most recent exam results showing 0% of students achieving A*-C in both GCSE English and mathematics making it the lowest possible score compared to the national average of 53.5% and the school has also seen a year on year fall on results with now only 71% of people achieving any qualifications at the school compared to 73% in 2009 and 100% in 2008 and the national average of 99.1%. Average total points per pupil is only 51 which is 88% lower than the national average of 439.[5]

In 2012 the school was in the national news over its controversial measure of forced drug testing for all staff members at the school which resulted in strike action by some of the staff members.[6]

Alderwasley Hall Sixth Form Centre[edit]

The sixth form facilities are Alderwasley Hall Sixth Form Centre which is 1 mile (2 km) south of Wirksworth, it is also used by the students from Alderwasley for Sport and Art.


The school is Primarily for Asperger's Syndrome and speech and language difficulties, but does take students with Autistic Spectrum of Difficulties, Dyslexia, Specific Learning Difficulties, Social Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties, Delicate/Medical Conditions, Epilepsy and Dual/Multi-Sensory Impairment [7] Because of the Special needs status of the students it results in a large amounts of call outs to Derbyshire Constabulary mostly regarding missing vulnerable persons.[8][9]

The Trust Centre[edit]

Since September 2010 there has been a new site for students with acquired brain injury. It is part of SENAD but operates under a different name (the Trust Centre). It shares many of the facilities with the school.

Notable former pupils[edit]


External links[edit]