Thomas Whitty

Died aged c. 79

Thomas Whitty (1713–1792) was an English carpet manufacturer who founded Axminster Carpets in 1755. Whitty was impressed by a large Turkish carpet he saw at Cheapside Market in London, and upon his return to Axminster he used his skills as a weaver to work out how to produce a product of similar quality. After several months work he completed his first carpet on midsummer's day 1755. His carpets were then chosen by wealthy aristocrats to have in their English country homes and town houses. Axminster Carpets were produced for the music room of the Brighton Royal Pavilion, Saltram House, Warwick Castle, Chatsworth House and in 1800 for the Sultan of Turkey. King George III and Queen Charlotte purchased Axminster carpets and also visited the factory which dominated the English carpet market between 1755 and 1835 when Samuel Rampson Whitty, the grandson of the founder was declared bankrupt following a disastrous fire seven years earlier which destroyed the weaving looms. Blackmores of Wilton, near Salisbury, bought the remaining stock and looms and extended their business to include hand-knotted carpets which were still called Axminsters.

Wikidata Wikipedia

Commemorated on 3 plaques

Law Chambers Standing beside the Old Carpet Factory, this double fronted house was at one time the home of Thomas Whitty. It is now occupied by a firm of solicitors.

Silver Street, Axminster, Axminster, United Kingdom where they lived

The Old Carpet Factory. This large grey stone building was erected in 1828 on the site of Thomas Whitty's original carpet factory, which was destroyed by fire two years earlier. Closed as a factory in 1835, it was used as the towns hospital before the new hospital was built in Chard Street. Before the First World War it was the headquarters of the Territorial Battalion.

Silver Street, Axminster, United Kingdom where they owned

United Reformed Church. The first chapel of the Axminster Independent Church (later the Congregational Church, now the United Reformed Church) was built in 1698. At one time with a thatched roof, long since replaced by slates, it stands beside a larger church built in 1828 and is now used as the Church Hall. Thomas Whitty, founder of the Axminster Carpet Industry, is commemorated by a plaque on the building and is buried in the little graveyard.

Chard Street, Axminster, United Kingdom where they was buried (1792)