‘Massive reaction’ of community hailed following death of much-loved Martham businessman

PUBLISHED: 17:08 01 February 2017 | UPDATED: 17:17 01 February 2017

Terry Whittaker of Whittaker Carpets who has died at the age of 71. The family business will carry on with his wife, son and grandson at the helm.

Terry Whittaker of Whittaker Carpets who has died at the age of 71. The family business will carry on with his wife, son and grandson at the helm.

Mark Whittaker

A long-standing carpet retailer has lost his 11-year battle with cancer.

Terry Whittaker of Whittaker Carpets in Martham died in the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital after the disease spread to his bone marrow.

He was 71.

Mr Whittaker and his wife Janet have been trading from the same spot for more than 40 years, their focus on going the extra mile winning loyal custom that took them countrywide.

The father of two was born in Liverpool but moved to Cobholm with his parents and older brother Tony when he was around five years old.

On leaving school he trained with the Co-op and Palmers before moving to Normans.

He met his bride-to-be Janet at the Floral Hall in Gorleston, now the Ocean Room, marrying as teenagers and going on to spend 53 years together.

They struck out on their own trading at first from their house in Cobholm before taking up the premises in White Street, Martham in 1975.

Over the years many of their customers had become friends, often laying carpets for them whenever they moved - even going as far as Scotland.

Mrs Whittaker said she was heartened by the messages and cards following her husbands death, hailing the “massive reaction” locally.

She described her husband as a humorous man who was always smiling and never complained.

He enjoyed his garden and was very family focused.

That their son Mark and grandson Ben were now involved in the business was a source of pride, bringing three generations under the carpet banner and continuing the values they held true.

The couple also have a daughter Julie, two other grandsons Alexander and Dominic and one great granddaughter Layla who was the apple of his eye.

Aside from the family business he enjoyed cars and bikes and family holidays.

Mrs Whittaker said it had been a good business and that they had always enjoyed the work and their place in the heart of the community.

She is set to carry on at the shop, greeting customers who can mine her decades of expertise for advice.

Some people had got all their carpets from the shop no matter where they had moved to, and Mrs Whittaker said they were always happy to go wherever their customers needed them.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Gravesend Reporter visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Gravesend Reporter staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Gravesend Reporter account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest News

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Wondering what the weather has in store for us this weekend? Watch our three-minute Met Office video forecast.

Friday, January 19, 2018

A major long distance bike event is set to start at Higham this year.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Two men have been summonsed to appear in court in connection with a fire at a leisure centre.

Friday, January 19, 2018

A group of veteran football players from Gravesend have moved into the digital age - where every kick of the ball is monitored to record their fitness level.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Gravesham will be celebrating with traditional Chinese entertainment on February 20, to mark the start of the Chinese New Year.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Strong winds overnight led to a pine tree smashing into a car and part of a house in Dartford early this morning.

Most read


Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition

Read the Gravesend Reporter e-edition today

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Show Job Lists

Family Notices 24

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder