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Posted: 16 September 2016 by Anne Ashford

Martin Carter (1961-2016)

It is with great sadness that I record the death of Martin Carter - an Ashford Media consultant, fellow director of Ashford Carter Communications Ltd and friend.


We first met as newspaper journalists on the press bench at Taunton Deane Borough Council in 1981. Those were the glorious days when the press was offered refreshments – and Martin certainly enjoyed tucking in!

He was a keen young reporter on the Western Daily Press and I was serving my apprenticeship on the Wellington Weekly News. As the years rolled by our careers took us in different directions – him to the Swindon Advertiser and me the BBC. Eventually we were both back in Somerset and found we’d both left the media for PR.

Martin’s route to NHS communications came about after reporting on the Hungerford massacre in 1987 when he became interested in the way the health service dealt with casualties. He became a hugely experienced communicator working primarily in healthcare including more than a decade at Director/Board level.

And that is when our paths crossed again and in 2007 Martin left the NHS and we set up a consultancy to advise the NHS on communications.

But there was so much more to Martin than his work! He was a passionate conservationist, traveller, foodie, gardener and musician (he took up the violin as an adult). And a generous friend who was as willing to lend me a rotavator as share his latest pub find.


  • Joanna
    25 January 2017

    I was really saddened to read of the premature death of Martin in 2016 - we attended St George's primary school together in the 1960s and I remember him well, not least because he was able to do standing somersaults and always landed on his feet! I remember him as a child having a real passion for learning - I think he was one of the few children at the school who had Look and Learn magazine at home too! He was a lovely boy and I'm sure he must be greatly missed.

  • Ian Dillow
    11 December 2016

    Martin worked with me at the Wessex Regional Health Authority in Winchester for several years before leaving for a spell in communications in Scotland. This didn't work out for him and he rang me to ask if there was any chance of him returning to Wessex. I nearly bit his hand off ! Martin was a truly excellent communications man, totally committed and determined. The journalists with whom he dealt had a huge regard for him. Like many, I was devastated to hear from Diane that he had passed away. Too young; not fair. With some colleagues, I made it to his funeral service in a lovely field near his home - a sad but memorable occasion. RIP mate - by the way, you still owe me some money !