'All-round lovely' - wife's tribute to much-loved Nick

Nick Carley, 68, who died in December 2021

More than 100 people attended Nick Carley's funeral, many of them fellow Ford Capri enthusiasts - Credit: Family of Nick Carley

The wife of an "all-round lovely" husband, father, grandad and classic car enthusiast has paid tribute to his kindness and amazing DIY skills, as his family hopes his young granddaughter will remember him. 

Nick Carley, from Framlingham, was 68 when he died on December 30, 2021, after a short illness. 

His funeral was held on Friday, February 11, with around 130 people attending to say goodbye to a much-loved man. 

On the day, his children followed him in the rare black Mark 2 Capri John Player Special he'd cherished so much.

Born in 1953, he stayed in Framlingham for 54 years, moving to Stowmarket in 2008 - the year he met his wife Lesley. 

He started his career in mechanics when he was 19, working at Potters in Framlingham. From there he moved to jobs at Halfords, Citroen and finally Cattermoles in West End Road in Ipswich before retirement came calling in 2018. 

But classic cars were Nick's passion.

Ford Capris and other classic cars fill the car park at Nick Carley's funeral

Nick loved restoring classic cars, particularly Ford Capris - Credit: Jon Clark

Most Read

His first project post-retirement was restoring a Ford Capri Brooklands, which he sold on to a collector after taking just three months to complete the work. 

And he and his close friend Jon Clark embarked on a number of trips in the UK and Europe in their prized Ford Capris -- the cars even played a part in his wedding with Lesley in May 2010. 

Speaking about her husband, Lesley said: "He was the kindest, most easy-going man I've ever met. He'd help anybody. 

"He was a good car mechanic and used to help the neighbours when he could, and was amazing at DIY. 

"I'm not just saying this because he was my husband, but he was all-round lovely. 

"He loved nature and wildlife, we used to go on lots of walks and spent a lot of time at bird reserves. One of the charities we both supported was the RSPB. 

"He also loved to help out at the Museum of East Anglian Life in Stowmarket and spent a lot of time helping them with photography for their catalogue - and he loved their beer festival, too. 

"We took caravan trips together, in the UK and Europe, and enjoyed music and concerts and spending time with our family, especially the four grandchildren." 

Nick had three children - two sons and one daughter - with Lesley's step-son and grandchildren forming his blended family. 

But the birth of his granddaughter in lockdown gave Nick a really lovely bond with the youngest member of his family, to whom he was Grandad Pat-Pat. 

Although they had to meet her with the length of the driveway in between them, due to Covid restrictions, for the last six months of his life Nick and Lesley looked after her every Tuesday. 

Lesley said: "We have a picture of him where she can reach it and she goes up to it and pats his head, which is very sweet. We hope it means she'll remember him."