Arthur Whiting 1880-1953

Arthur (right) & brother Frank (left) as boys.

Parents: Frank Whiting and Emma Spicer. (1,2)
Born: 25th April 1880 in 7 Chauntry Row, Haverhill. (1,2)
Baptised: 20th June 1880 at St Mary's Parish Church, Haverhill.(1)
Married: Emily Rowlingson, daughter of William Rowlingson, in 1903(3)
Children: Arthur Clemson Whiting b.1904, Phyllis Muriel Whiting b.1907 died aged 17 months, Freda Evelyn Whiting b.1909 and Richard William Whiting b.1920
Died: 3rd February 1953 at 94 Withersfield Road, Haverhill. Buried at Haverhill Cemetery.(4,5,8)

Bio: Arthur was born on 25th April 1880 at 7 Chauntry Row, Haverhill, and appears there on the 1881 census living with his parents Frank and Emma and their two lodgers, Harriet Iron (Emma's half-sister) and David Manfield, who along with Frank and Emma were both working at Gurteen's. Still at Chauntry Row on the 1891 census, Arthur now has two brothers, Frank and Bennett.

On 8th October 1898 Arthur, along with Emily Rowlingson, was a witness at the wedding of his cousin Frank Whiting to Florence Lewsey at the Parish Church. At some point in the next decade his parents moved to 21 Broad Street, and Arthur features on the 1901 census living there with them and his brothers and working as a commercial clerk. Two years later he was to marry Emily Rowlingson, who was the daughter of William Rowlingson, a presser at Gurteen's, and Caroline Jane Basham. They had two children Arthur and Freda, who appear on the 1911 census. At this point we see the family living at 1 Chainey Pieces, Haverhill. Arthur (senior) is a clerk for a Clothing Manufacturer (presumably Gurteen's).

Arthur Whiting did not join up at the start of the First World War, and after conscription came in in 1917 he featured in a list of 'Temporary Exemptions' recorded in the Cambridge Daily News of 2nd June 1917: "Two months - Arthur Whiting (36), commercial clerk, employers Messrs. D. Gurteen and Sons".(9)

Arthur's second son Richard remembered that the family lived at 41 High Street over Wilkins, the tailors and outfitters(6). Arthur worked there, and eventually became shop manager. It seems that Wilkins had been in the High Street from around 1894 and judging from the interesting article on the Haverhill Echo website(6) Arthur and family must have been living there around the 1920's and 30's as Madeline Sargent (nee Porter) remembers her father being manager from the 1940's and also residing above the shop.

Arthur was a keen musician and played in Tommy Turner's popular local dance band in his younger days. He was able to pick out a good tune on the fiddle, which his great niece Jackie remembers well. As children she and her sister Vivienne would visit their Uncle Arthur and Aunt Emily, when Arthur would inevitably play 'Pop goes the Weasel' with a loud pizzicato on the 'pop'! Richard seemed to remember that he played the saxophone too. As well as music, Arthur enjoyed sport and turned out for the Haverhill Rovers alongside playing in the local Cricket team.

In later years Arthur and Emily moved to 94 Withersfield Road, where they remained for the rest of their lives.

Emily died aged 73 on 17th December 1952. A funeral notice appeared in the South West Suffolk Echo of 27th December 1952: 'The funeral took place at Haverhill on Saturday, of Mrs Emily Whiting, aged 73, of 94, Withersfield Road, Haverhill, whose death took place at her home the previous Wednesday after a long illness. A native of Haverhill, Mrs Whiting was the wife of Mr Arthur Whiting, a former manager of Messrs. Wilkins and Co., Haverhill. Up to five years ago before illness prevented her, she had worshipped at the Methodist Church where she had been a member of the Women's Own and a member of the choir in her younger life. Had the deceased lived, Mr and Mrs Whiting would have celebrated their golden wedding next year... immediate mourners were: Mr Arthur Whiting, husband; Mrs T C Webb, daughter; Messrs. Arthur and Richard Whiting, sons; Mrs E R Mudd, granddaughter; Mr T C Webb, son-in-law; Mrs H Whybrow, Miss M M Rowlingson, sisters ; Mrs E A Whiting, sister-in-law; Mr H Whybrow, brother-in-law; Mrs K Taylor and Miss G Rowlingson, nieces; Mrs B Amey, cousin. Unable to attend were Mrs A Wallace (sister), Mr B G Rawlingson (brother) and Mr and Mrs B Whiting (brother-in-law and sister-in-law)'

Arthur died the following year. Probate with effects of £2984 3s 3d was granted to daughter Freda Evelyn Webb (who had married Thomas Charles Webb).(8)

They are both buried at Haverhill Cemetery (gravestone pictured above).


(1) Suffolk Records Office, Bury St Edmunds, Parish Registers of St Mary's Church, Haverhill. Fiche 578/4/p14 of 37
(2) Birth Register. 2nd Quarter 1880, Risbridge District, Volume 4a Page 537 or 539
(3) Marriage Register. 3rd Quarter 1903, Risbridge District, Volume 4a Page 1531
(4) Death Register. 1st Quarter 1953, Newmarket District, Volume 4b Page 1257
(5) Haverhill Cemetery, Compartment V, Space 22.
(7) Richard Whiting, Arthur's son
(8) National Probate Calendar, 1858-1966,
(9) Cambridge Daily News, 2 June 1917, p.4,