David Nieper Academy to Memorialise School’s Rich History

The David Nieper Academy in Alfreton, Derbyshire has announced plans to create a memorial in honour of former Headmaster Wilfred Dawes O.B.E. and Alderman William Mortimer Wilson, local businessman, lawyer and chairman of the county education committee, who founded the school in 1939.  As the first, and the School’s longest serving Headmaster, Mr Dawes was awarded the O.B.E. in 1959 for services to Education. He retired in 1974.

The David Nieper Academy, formerly Alfreton Grange Arts College and Mortimer Wilson School has been at the very heart of the Alfreton community for decades where often generations of the same family have attended.

David Nieper Academy governors, along with some of the school’s former pupils plan to create tributes within the new school campus to honour two of the individuals that have helped shape the school’s history, and contributed so much to the community and educating Alfreton’s school children over the years.

The final location and nature of the memorial is still to be confirmed, however plans so far include a Wilfred Dawes memorial garden to create a living remembrance, and the official naming of the new school’s sports hall as the ‘Mortimer Wilson Sport Hall’ with a commemorative plaque and an annual sports’ day fundraising event. 

Also under discussion is the provision of a cup or trophy, awarded to pupils annually and large enough for the names of the recipients to be engraved.

The school is keen to work with the local historical society to create a permanent exhibition within the school to provide information about the work and lives of Alderman Mortimer Wilson (1865–1941) and Wilfred Dawes O.B.E. (1909–1986).

Dr. Kathryn Hobbs, Headteacher at David Nieper Academy commented:

“Both Mortimer Wilson and Wilfred Dawes are held in highest esteem in the world of education and it is entirely fitting that we commemorate their achievements here at the school. They are an important part of the school’s history; we want to create a memorial that will be here for years to come to be enjoyed by Alfreton’s future generations.”

Stephen Beet, a former Mortimer Wilson pupil, now living in Novosibirsk, Russia said:

“The fact that both my father and I were taught by Wilfred Dawes is testament to the great influence he had on the people of Alfreton over the years.  He raised many of us from humble beginnings and enabled us to reach our goals.  For this we shall ever remember him and be grateful.”

I am delighted that governors of the David Nieper Academy are keen to commemorate these two great men who not only made an outstanding contribution to education but personally touched the lives of generations of children.”



For further information about the David Nieper Academy visit call 01773 832331 or visit http://davidnieper.academy/  

For further media information contact [email protected]  07904 257687